The tension between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden ramped up to new levels this week, only serving to remind the public that these politicians aren’t too fond of one another. Both men have traded verbal jabs in the past, but earlier this week, their sparring also took place on Twitter. Now, we get to watch two grown men devolve, making brusque threats against one another, both in person and on Twitter, and imagine a world where these two would just disagree over their policies instead.
Earlier this week, Biden was giving a speech at the University of Miami when he took things to a whole new, below-the-belt level.
“They asked me would I like to debate this gentleman, and I said no,” Biden said, continuing to say, “I said, ‘If we were in high school, I’d take him behind the gym and beat the hell out of him.'”
That’s pretty far over the line, especially for Biden. These two can disagree on political issues all day long, but threatening physical violence? That is just never OK. And while one would hope this would be the end of it, and we’d all recognize that Biden said something cringeworthy, and we’d all move on from it, Trump saw an opportunity to fire back on Twitter.
Crazy Joe Biden is trying to act like a tough guy. Actually, he is weak, both mentally and physically, and yet he threatens me, for the second time, with physical assault. He doesn’t know me, but he would go down fast and hard, crying all the way. Don’t threaten people Joe!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 22, 2018
“Crazy Joe Biden is trying to act like a tough guy,” he wrote. “Actually, he is weak, both mentally and physically, and yet he threatens me, for the second time, with physical assault. He doesn’t know me, but he would go down fast and hard, crying all the way. Don’t threaten people Joe!”
Since Trump became president, Biden has criticized him many times, even going so far as to say we’re “walking down a dark path” under his presidency. But what’s really surprising is this isn’t even the first time these two have physically threatened one another. CNN reports that Biden made a similar comment at a Hillary Clinton rally before the election, saying, “The press always ask me, ‘Don’t I wish I were debating him?’ No, I wish we were in high school — I could take him behind the gym. That’s what I wish.”
Trump clapped back after that one too, telling the crowd at Washington’s Gridiron Club Dinner, “You know when he said, ‘I’m going to take you behind the barn’? Oh, just trust me, I would kick his ass. He’d be easy.”
Regardless of how you feel about either man, it’s hard to condone this kind of talk or feel empathetic toward the position they have put themselves in with this feud. Threatening violence just isn’t OK, but it’s especially disheartening coming from two high-profile leaders like Biden and Trump.