Joe Biden, in what can only be called a stunning flip-flop, now supports President Trump’s travel ban with China, which was imposed on January 31.
“Joe Biden supports travel bans that are guided by medical experts, advocated by public health officials, and backed by a full strategy,” Kate Bedingfield, Biden’s deputy campaign manager, told CNN. “Science supported this ban, therefore he did too.”
But Joe Biden did not support Trump’s travel ban with China. His record is quite clear on this. In an op-ed in USA Today, Biden decried “reactionary travel bans,” just a few days before the China travel ban was implemented. Biden advisor Ron Klain said the idea of a travel ban was “premature.”
When the travel ban was implemented, Biden criticized the move during a campaign rally. “In moments like this, this is where the credibility of a president is most needed, as he explains what we should and should not do,” he said. “This is no time for Donald Trump’s record of hysteria and xenophobia, hysterical xenophobia, to uh, and fearmongering.”
Joe Biden opposed the China travel restrictions wisely put in place by President Trump in January – restrictions that health experts credit with slowing the spread of coronavirus & saving lives.
If Biden had been in charge, more Americans would have contracted the virus faster. pic.twitter.com/yDXRYl6lOk
— Trump War Room – Text TRUMP to 88022 (@TrumpWarRoom) March 12, 2020
The following day, he reiterated that sentiment in a tweet:
We are in the midst of a crisis with the coronavirus. We need to lead the way with science — not Donald Trump’s record of hysteria, xenophobia, and fear-mongering. He is the worst possible person to lead our country through a global health emergency.
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) February 1, 2020
It seems as though the Biden campaign is trying to rewrite history by claiming he never opposed the travel ban with China that experts say saved thousands of American lives. Bedingfield claims Biden’s “reference to xenophobia was about Trump’s long record of scapegoating others at a time when the virus was emerging from China,” and that it was not a reference to the travel ban.
This Orwellian attempt to change Biden’s position is being aided by the media as well. Last week the Washington Post defended Biden from accusations by Trump that he opposed the travel ban with China because it was xenophobic by arguing that “whether Biden was specifically speaking about Trump’s travel restrictions is open to debate.
“The overwhelming evidence shows that Biden repeatedly slammed the restrictions out of a knee-jerk need to oppose President Trump’s every move. And now that he has reversed himself, Biden adds to a long list of Trump actions that Biden has called for or agreed with after the President has already acted,” said Trump campaign Director of Communications Tim Murtaugh.
Matt Margolis is the author of Trumping Obama: How President Trump Saved Us From Barack Obama’s Legacy and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis