MSNBC Asks Biden What Day 1 of Presidency Will Be Like, Pardon Trump?

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In an effort to aid presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden in his struggle to forge a campaign during the coronavirus crisis, MSNBC’s The Last Word hosted an hour-long interview/town hall special featuring the former Vice President and Stacey Abrams, who’s been more than adamant about wanting to be his running mate. Among the softball questions, slow-pitched to Biden was whether or not he would commit to not pardon President Trump of his crimes, and to describe how he would face the crisis on day one.

Host Lawrence O’Donnell set the tone for the gooey hour right from the get-go, declaring the issues of the election were a matter of “life and death!”

“If Joe Biden is sworn in as the next president on January 20th, your life, and your children’s lives, and your parents’ lives, and your grandparents’ lives are going to depend on the work that Joe Biden starts doing that afternoon in the Oval Office, in the Cabinet Room, in the Situation Room,” he proclaimed.

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And that was the first question O’Donnell posed to Biden (Click “expand”):

So, your inauguration will be quick. It will not have a parade if the conditions are the same as today. It will probably take place indoors, maybe in the rotunda of the Capitol. You’ll be able to get right back to the Oval Office by 1:00 P.M. You walk back into the West Wing of the White House. Secretary of Labor is waiting with those frightening unemployment statistics, secretary of Health and Human Services is there, Dr. Fauci will probably still be there or will have been rehired by you if he’s been fired.

Where do you start? Who do you talk to first? What’s the decision sequence?

As a side note, O’Donnell’s delivery of the question lasted over a minute (1:08) and that was only a portion of it.

The question about not pardoning Trump came in the form of a pre-screened question from “Edward from Ohio,” who hoped Bided would not “pull a President Ford” and give “Donald Trump a pardon under the pretense of healing the nation? In other words, are you willing to commit to the American ideal that no one is above the law?

 

 

After Biden committed to letting his opponent get prosecuted by his Justice Department, O’Donnell wanted him to elaborate:

So, that’s a commitment. Mr. Vice President, you’re saying that wherever the investigative trail might lead, whether that be an investigative trail pursued by the Justice Department against Trump officials, Trump associates, administration officials, whether those are congressional investigations, that’s hands-off for you? You’re not going to say, let’s just let bygones be bygones?

Surprisingly, O’Donnell actually brought up Tara Reade’s rape allegations against Biden. But both questions were designed to let Biden dismiss the claims. “Do you remember Tara Reade, who worked there for about – around a year in 1992, ’93,” O’Donnell asked after surmising that Biden must have had “well over 1,000” staffers over his decades in the Senate.

The second question teed up to Biden explain why women should still vote for him. “What do you say to women ready to vote for Joe Biden, eager to vote for Joe Biden but this gives them serious pause because they do believe Tara Reade and you’re not going to change their mind about that. What would you say to them about their vote,” O’Donnell wondered.

One of the final interview questions was about Biden’s role in the corrupt investigation of Lt. General Michael Flynn (ret.). “Mr. Vice President, what was your involvement in the investigation of Michael Flynn and the FBI investigation of Michael Flynn,” O’Donnell said.

“I was never a part or had any knowledge of any criminal investigation into Flynn while I was in office, period. Not one single time,” Biden replied. But that was a lie that went unchallenged.

Recently released documents proved that Biden was briefed on the probe and admitted to as much in an ABC interview. Biden’s name also appeared on a list of names who requested Flynn’s identity to be unmasked.

But what else would you expect from a Democratic propaganda mill like MSNBC?

The relevant portions of the transcript are below, click “expand” to read:

MSNBC’s The Last Word
May 14, 2020
10:01:22 p.m. Eastern

LAWRENCE O’DONNELL: When Joe Biden announced his campaign for president just over a year ago, COVID-19 did not exist. But now the coronavirus pandemic threatens the lives of every man, woman, and child in the United States. You have heard Joe Biden on all of the other issues that were raised in the several presidential campaign debates. Now it’s time to hear from Joe Biden about the issues that will dominate the rest of the presidential campaign, issues of life and death.

If Joe Biden is sworn in as the next president on January 20th, your life, and your children’s lives, and your parents’ lives, and your grandparents’ lives are going to depend on the work that Joe Biden starts doing that afternoon in the Oval Office, in the Cabinet Room, in the Situation Room.

We’re going to ask Joe Biden to take us inside those rooms with him tonight and tell us exactly what he would do on the afternoon of inauguration day, if he is elected president.

(…)

O’DONNELL: I want to go right into day one of your presidency and let’s assume the conditions we have today because Dr. Fauci, Anthony Fauci guarantees us – He’s used the word “guarantee” for a second wave.

That second wave would surely be breaking in January combined with the regular flu season. You can imagine 1,700 people dying a day, as is happening now. We can imagine hundreds of thousands more infections happening throughout the country and — and at the very same time, you have this astronomical depression-level unemployment rate.

So, your inauguration will be quick. It will not have a parade if the conditions are the same as today. It will probably take place indoors, maybe in the rotunda of the Capitol. You’ll be able to get right back to the Oval Office by 1:00 P.M. You walk back into the West Wing of the White House. Secretary of Labor is waiting with those frightening unemployment statistics, secretary of Health and Human Services is there, Dr. Fauci will probably still be there or will have been rehired by you if he’s been fired.

Where do you start? Who do you talk to first? What’s the decision sequence?

(…)

10:19:01 p.m. Eastern

O’DONNELL: Mr. Vice President, before we go to a break, before we bring in Stacey Abrams. I want to ask you about the Tara Reade story. And you served in the Senate for about 36 years, a senator from Delaware, you were chairman of committees. Having worked in the Senate myself. I’m just in my head doing the numbers. You have to have had well over 1,000 Senate staffers between the committee staff, the Delaware Senate staff, do you remember Tara Reade, who worked there for about – around a year in 1992, ’93?

(…)

O’DONNELL: Let me ask you about a piece—It was an op-ed piece in The New York Times recently by Linda Hirshman, it was entitled “I believe Tara Reade, I’m voting for Joe Biden anyway.” And this is an accusation that she says there were no witnesses to this, it happened in a semi—or in a public place the way she describes it in the basement of Senate. That might sound like a private place but as you and I both know, that’s a thorough fair, that’s a very busy area. But there are no witnesses to it so it your word saying it didn’t happen and now her version of it that it did happen.

What do you say to women ready to vote for Joe Biden, eager to vote for Joe Biden but this gives them serious pause because they do believe Tara Reade and you’re not going to change their mind about that. What would you say to them about their vote?

(…)

10:54:14 p.m. Eastern

EDWARD FROM OHIO: Sir, if you were to win the election, would you be willing to commit to not pulling a President Ford and giving Donald Trump a pardon under the pretense of healing the nation? In other words, are you willing to commit to the American ideal that no one is above the law?

JOE BIDEN: Absolutely, I commit.

O’DONNELL: And this is helping us get in all the more questions.

So, that’s a commitment. Mr. Vice President, you’re saying that wherever the investigative trail might lead, whether that be an investigative trail pursued by the Justice Department against Trump officials, Trump associates, administration officials, whether those are congressional investigations, that’s hands-off for you? You’re not going to say, let’s just let bygones be bygones?

(…)

10:58:59 p.m. Eastern

O’DONNELL: The issue of people wanting the attorney general to resign is over the Michael Flynn case where the attorney general is basically trying to drop the case as a federal judge questioning how that case is being dropped. Mr. Vice President, what was your involvement in the investigation of Michael Flynn and the FBI investigation of Michael Flynn?

BIDEN: I was never a part or had any knowledge of any criminal investigation into Flynn while I was in office, period. Not one single time.

(…)

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