mcloudy.png
Saturday January 25th, 2020 2:34PM

Biden, Bullock kick off Iowa State Fair blitz talking guns

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Former Vice President Joe Biden and Montana Gov. Steve Bullock opened the Iowa State Fair's 2020 presidential blitz on Thursday by blistering President Donald Trump and promising to push new gun restrictions.

"I believe everything the president's said and done encourages white supremacists," Biden said as Trump continued to take criticism for his handling of back-to-back mass shootings. One of the shooters is believed to have written a racist screed echoing some of Trump's incendiary language about immigrants.

Bullock said Trump's rhetoric and behavior — attacking his critics on the day he traveled to ostensibly console victims' families in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio — are beneath the office he holds.

"The lies and the statements that divide us by race, gender, geography — we expect more out of our preschoolers now than we do the president of the United States," Bullock said.

Biden and Bullock are the first of more than 20 candidates — nearly all Democrats — who will speak at the Iowa fairgrounds over the coming days. It's a rite of passage for would-be presidents, and for Democrats it highlights their challenges in a state like Iowa, a presidential battleground that mixes cultural conservatives and farm country, liberal college towns and plenty of swing voters in between.

California Sen. Kamala Harris on Thursday declined to label Trump a white supremacist, as former Texas Rep. Beto O'Rourke has since the El Paso shooting.

"I think that there's no question that his words and his language ... (have) been about condoning the conduct and certainly accommodating the conduct of white supremacists," Harris told reporters after a campaign stop at a private college in Sioux City, Iowa. "So, I think it's a fair conversation to have."

Pressed on the question, she said, "'I think you should ask him that question."

At a candidates' forum held Thursday in Miami by the National Association of Black Journalists, South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg was asked if he thought Trump was a white supremacist. "I do," Buttigieg responded.

Biden accused Trump on Wednesday of "fanning the flames of white supremacy."

Trump won Iowa comfortably in 2016 after President Barack Obama, with Biden as his running mate, won the state twice. The typical Democratic caucus electorate, meanwhile, leans far more liberal than the general electorate.

Biden and Bullock promised to compete both for caucus votes and for the state in November.

"If we can't win back places we lost, ... if we can't give people a reason to vote for us and not just against him, Donald Trump will win again," Bullock said. "The path to victory doesn't just go through the coasts."

But first, the caucus is critical for both men — for different reasons.

Biden, as the national polling leader since he entered the race, needs to demonstrate the strength of a front-runner. Bullock, meanwhile, is a longshot looking for a slow, steady rise from a state where he has family connections and is comfortable selling his Montana record.

Bullock faces an uphill battle in part because of Biden's standing: Both men hail from the more moderate-to-liberal core of the party, warning that a progressive lurch could help re-elect Trump. But the 53-year-old governor is dwarfed by the universal name recognition of the 76-year-old former vice president.

The two candidates Thursday reaffirmed their support for new gun restrictions — expanded background checks, bans on certain military-style weapons and ammunition — even as they stopped short of some solutions their more liberal opponents have proposed.

Bullock said he opposed mandatory buyback programs for military-style weapons, even if Congress bans future manufacture and sales of those guns. Biden said he's wary about using executive orders to do anything other than tinker with background checks. He said banning weapons and ammunition must be done through Congress.

Harris has said she'd use sweeping executive action on guns if Congress doesn't act within 100 days of her inauguration.

Biden and Bullock dismissed the notion that their positions on guns could be at odds with their promises of winning back areas of the country that flipped to Trump in 2016.

Bullock noted that he's vetoed some measures backed by gun lobby, yet won re-election in Montana anyway on the same day Trump won the state by 20 percentage points.

Biden, in turn, quickly dismissed some arguments used to push back on restricting some guns and ammunition.

"It violates no one's Second Amendment rights to say that you can't own certain weapons," Biden said, a reference to the Supreme Court stating explicitly that some regulations are permissible.

Anyone who says they need high-capacity magazines to hunt, Biden said, isn't a "good shot in the first place." He added particular scorn for the notion that the Second Amendment ensures citizens can defend themselves against the government.

"Those who say 'the tree of liberty is watered with the blood of patriots,' they make the case that you've got to have enough firepower to take on the government if they come after you," Biden said. "Well, you need a lot more than an AK-47 or an AR-15."

__

Follow Barrow on Twitter at https://twitter.com/BillBarrowAP . Associated Press writer Thomas Beaumont contributed from Sioux City, Iowa.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, Top General short headlines, AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Online Congress News, AP Elections, General Election News, General Presidential Election News, AP Elections - Political Conventions
© Copyright 2020 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Trump, getting facts wrong, says he may free Blagojevich
President Donald Trump has sent his clearest signal yet that he may about to sign papers freeing former Illinois governor from a federal prison
7:04PM ( 7 minutes ago )
Experts push for domestic terrorism law after attacks
Lawmakers are being pushed to create a domestic terrorism law after mass shootings in Texas, California and Ohio
7:04PM ( 8 minutes ago )
Biden, Bullock kick off Iowa State Fair blitz talking guns
The Iowa State Fair presidential blitz is under way, with former Vice President Joe Biden and Montana Gov. Steve Bullock blistering President Donald Trump
6:52PM ( 20 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Italy's Salvini pushes for a new election over deadlocks
Italy is facing a government crisis after Interior Minister Matteo Salvini of the right-wing League party called for a new election, saying his party's coalition with the populist 5-Star Movement has clearly collapsed over policy differences
6:12PM ( 1 hour ago )
Trump fundraiser puts billionaire host on defensive
A billionaire New York investor and owner of the Miami Dolphins who is hosting a high-dollar fundraiser for President Donald Trump also has a financial interest in the president's business empire _ including his iconic Manhattan tower.
6:07PM ( 1 hour ago )
Biden, Bullock kick off Iowa State Fair campaign blitz
The Iowa State Fair presidential blitz is underway with former Vice President Joe Biden and Montana Gov. Steve Bullock
6:05PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
Mayors urge Senate to return to Washington for gun bill vote
More than 200 mayors, including those where mass shootings occurred, are urging Senate leaders to return to Washington to act on bipartisan gun safety legislation
2:29PM ( 4 hours ago )
Fearing the next AOC, House Democrats hoard campaign cash
House Democratic incumbents are raising money fearing upstarts like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
2:14PM ( 4 hours ago )
Modi's Hindu vision of India sees smooth passage on Kashmir
Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision of a Hindu India has taken a leap forward with his government's decision to subsume Muslim-majority Kashmir into the federal government by eliminating its special status
12:35PM ( 6 hours ago )
AP Online Congress News
UK opposition warns Johnson against Brexit 'abuse of power'
Britain's main opposition leader wants a guarantee that Prime Minister Boris Johnson won't let the U.K. tumble out of the European Union during an election campaign
5:39PM ( 1 hour ago )
Migration, corruption hover over Guatemala presidential vote
Guatemalans to vote for new president amid migration fears, corruption and poverty
12:41PM ( 6 hours ago )
The Latest: Trump wraps up visits to mass shooting sites
President Donald Trump has wrapped up his visits to cities reeling from mass shootings that left 31 dead and dozens more wounded
3:38AM ( 15 hours ago )
AP Elections
2020 Democrats target Trump gains in rural areas
2020 Democrats Warren, Klobuchar and Gillibrand are release sweeping plans to revitalize rural America
3:47PM ( 1 day ago )
The Latest: Biden says Trump is 'fueling a literal carnage'
Biden in Iowa says Trump's racist attacks are 'fueling a literal carnage;' calls Trump's repudiation of white supremacy 'low energy'
3:24PM ( 1 day ago )
The Latest: WH blasts Ohio Dems after praising Trump meeting
White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham characterized President Donald Trump's meeting with Democratic officials in Dayton, Ohio, as "very warm" but then tweeted against those same officials
3:14PM ( 1 day ago )
General Election News
Trump words linked to more hate crime? Some experts think so
President Donald Trump's words linked to more hate crime? Some extremism experts say data suggests a correlation between heated rhetoric from top leaders and reports of hate crimes
5:57PM ( 1 day ago )
The Latest: O'Rourke to speak out at rally as Trump visits
Democratic presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke is attending an El Paso, Texas community rally timed to serve as counterprogramming to President Donald Trump's visit
8:14AM ( 1 day ago )
Taliban claim suicide car bombing in west Kabul, dozens hurt
Taliban suicide car bomber targets police headquarters in minority Shiite part of Kabul; dozens hurt
3:48AM ( 1 day ago )
General Presidential Election News
Trump, Republican party sue over California tax return law
The Trump campaign and Republican Party have sued California over a law requiring presidential candidates to release their tax returns
3:31PM ( 2 days ago )
4 sue to block California tax return law aimed at Trump
Four California voters have sued to block a new state law aimed at forcing Republican President Donald Trump to release his personal income tax returns
8:39PM ( 2 days ago )
Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse kicks off re-election campaign
Ben Sasse of Nebraska kicks off his re-election campaign for US senator surrounded by top Republicans who vouched for the first-term lawmaker as best candidate in the deeply conservative state
8:33PM ( 2 days ago )
AP Elections - Political Conventions
Trump, getting facts wrong, says he may free Blagojevich
President Donald Trump has sent his clearest signal yet that he may about to sign papers freeing former Illinois governor from a federal prison
7:04PM ( 8 minutes ago )
Experts push for domestic terrorism law after attacks
Lawmakers are being pushed to create a domestic terrorism law after mass shootings in Texas, California and Ohio
7:04PM ( 9 minutes ago )
Merritt ties course record for lead at Northern Trust
Troy Merritt ties course record with a 62 as Tiger Woods posts his second-worst score in FedEx Cup playoffs
6:44PM ( 28 minutes ago )
Arizona man baffled, amused by 'Green Shirt Guy' status
Alex Kack is mystified that video of him simply laughing at a city council meeting in Arizona has captivated the internet
6:30PM ( 42 minutes ago )
Khachanov beats Montreal teen Auger-Aliassime in Rogers Cup
Sixth-seeded Karen Khachanov of Russia beat Montreal teenager Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-7 (7), 7-5, 6-3 in the Rogers Cup at windy and raucous IGA Stadium
6:30PM ( 42 minutes ago )