clearn.png
Wednesday June 26th, 2019 10:18PM

Trump, Biden trade barbs amid dueling Iowa campaign visits

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

MOUNT PLEASANT, Iowa (AP) — President Donald Trump and Democrat Joe Biden spent Tuesday trading insults — sometimes almost simultaneously— as they stumped across Iowa in split-screen moments that could preview a ferocious fight ahead if the two face off for the presidency next year.

The back and forth laid bare the rising political stakes for each man, even with the election about 17 months away. Trump has zeroed in on Biden as a potential threat to his reelection chances and is testing themes to beat him back. Biden, meanwhile, is campaigning as a front-runner, relishing the one-on-one fight with Trump while making sure he doesn't ignore the demands of the Democratic primary.

"People don't respect him," Trump said after touring a renewable energy facility in Council Bluffs. "Even the people that he's running against, they're saying: 'Where is he? What happened?'"

With a dose of exaggeration and name-dropping his 2016 rival, Hillary Clinton, the president added: "He makes his stance in Iowa once every two weeks and then he mentions my name 74 times in one speech. I don't know. That reminds me of Crooked Hillary. She did the same thing."

At almost the same moment in Mount Pleasant, Biden noted the attention he has been getting from Trump. Biden's appearances from earlier in the day were playing on TV screens when Air Force One landed in Iowa.

"I guess he's really fascinated by me," said Biden, who mentioned Trump by name about a dozen times during his first two events in Iowa. "I find it fascinating." He started to say more but then stopped himself, quipping: "My mother would say: 'Joey, focus. Don't descend. Stay up.'"

Pressed later by reporters about his repeated assurances that he wouldn't openly criticize Trump while campaigning, Biden said, "By not talking about him personally — talking about where I disagree with him on the issues, why he's doing such damage to the country — that's totally different than attacking his character or lack thereof."

Speaking Tuesday night in Davenport, Biden said voters must stop the president's attempts to elevate his office beyond its traditional limits of power. Trump is "breaking down the barriers that constrain his power," Biden said, and acting like he has "complete power."

"No, you don't, Donald Trump!" Biden thundered into the microphone, sparking cheers from a crowd of around 500 at the Mississippi Valley Fairgrounds.

Trump, meanwhile, insisted that Biden was the candidate he hoped to face off against in 2020.

"I'd rather run against Biden than anybody," Trump told reporters on the White House lawn before flying to Iowa. "I think he's the weakest mentally, and I like running against people that are weak mentally."

Biden began the day in Ottumwa, the heart of Wapello County, a meat-packing and agricultural manufacturing center that Trump was the first Republican to carry since Dwight D. Eisenhower. It's part of Biden's dual track approach: campaigning for the caucuses while projecting himself as someone who can win in territory Trump snatched from Democrats in 2016, such as Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

There, the former vice president hit Trump on the economy — an issue the president often promotes as his chief strength in a time of low unemployment.

"I hope his presence here will be a clarifying event because Iowa farmers have been crushed by his tariffs toward China," Biden said. "It's really easy to be tough when someone else absorbs the pain, farmers and manufacturers."

Biden added that Trump "backed off his threat of tariffs to Mexico basically because he realized he was likely to lose" in manufacturing states such as Michigan and Ohio. He broadly branded Trump "an existential threat to this country" and said his behavior is beneath the office of the presidency.

For Trump, the power of incumbency was on display in this state dominated by agriculture interests. As the president toured a plant that produces and sells the corn-based fuel additive ethanol, he signed an executive order to "promote agricultural biotechnology." He said the measure would help farmers by speeding up the scientific review of their innovative products and help get them to market faster.

"I fought very hard for ethanol, but you proved me right," Trump said, adding that he fought "for the American farmer like no president has fought before."

But he then again mocked Biden.

"He was some place in Iowa today," the president said, "and he said my name so many times that people couldn't stand it."

Later addressing an evening fundraiser in West Des Moines, Trump refrained from mentioning Biden by name but took a veiled swipe at the former vice president's recent reversal on the Hyde Amendment, a ban on using federal funds to pay for abortions. Biden now says he opposes the ban.

"They go for one thing for a lifetime, and then they flip, and they go to something totally different," Trump said. "It depends on which race they're running."

___

Superville reported from Council Bluffs and West Des Moines. Weissert reported from Washington. Associated Press writers Alexandra Jaffe in Mount Pleasant, Iowa, and Zeke Miller in Washington contributed to this report.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, Top General short headlines, AP Online Headlines - Washington
© Copyright 2019 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Building materials helped spread Grenfell fire, US suit says
A lawsuit filed in the U.S. says faulty building materials helped spread a devastating fire at London's Grenfell Tower in 2017
8:04PM ( 7 minutes ago )
Trump, Biden trade barbs amid dueling Iowa campaign visits
President Donald Trump and Democrat Joe Biden are going after each other in dueling visits to Iowa
8:03PM ( 9 minutes ago )
Feisty Virginia primaries closely watched for national trend
A longtime Virginia Republican lawmaker who supported expanding Medicaid has defeated a primary challenger
8:02PM ( 9 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Jon Stewart lashes out at Congress over 9/11 victims fund
Comedian Jon Stewart is scolding Congress for failing to ensure that a victims' compensation fund set up after the 9/11 attacks never runs out of money
6:59PM ( 1 hour ago )
Judge: Obama center construction can move forward in Chicago
Federal judge in Chicago dismisses advocacy group's lawsuit objecting to the use of historic public parkland for Barack Obama's presidential center
6:57PM ( 1 hour ago )
Pelosi says Dems 'not even close' to starting impeachment
Brushing back calls for impeachment, Speaker Nancy Pelosi says "it's not even close" to having enough support in the House, while Democrats pushed forward on other fronts to investigate President Donald Trump
6:48PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP National News
US 'gift' to China shows unenforced North Korea sanctions
Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan sat down with his Chinese counterpart during a recent trip to Singapore and presented him with a photo book that was intended as more than a friendly gesture
5:52PM ( 2 hours ago )
Trump, Biden trade insults during dueling Iowa visits
Biden, Trump swap insults in dueling visits to Iowa
5:37PM ( 2 hours ago )
As bishops gather, prosecutors step up scrutiny of church
Attorneys general eyeing U.S. church authorities in growing clergy abuse investigations
5:29PM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Online National News
Building materials helped spread Grenfell fire, US suit says
A lawsuit filed in the U.S. says faulty building materials helped spread a devastating fire at London's Grenfell Tower in 2017
8:04PM ( 7 minutes ago )
Feisty Virginia primaries closely watched for national trend
A longtime Virginia Republican lawmaker who supported expanding Medicaid has defeated a primary challenger
8:02PM ( 9 minutes ago )
Pilot killed in crash wasn't certified to fly in bad weather
The pilot killed when his helicopter slammed into the roof of a New York City skyscraper was not authorized to fly in limited visibility, according to his pilot certification
7:54PM ( 17 minutes ago )
Holocaust Museum digitizing letters from Anne Frank's father
A man who struck up a pen pal correspondence with Otto Frank, the father of Anne Frank, says Frank became a father figure to him
7:52PM ( 19 minutes ago )
Trump, Biden furiously trade barbs amid dueling Iowa visits
President Donald Trump and Democrat Joe Biden are going after each other in dueling visits to Iowa
7:48PM ( 24 minutes ago )