Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden offered up a strange apology for saying in 1998 that history will question whether Bill Clinton’s impeachment was a “partisan lynching.”
“This wasn’t the right word to use and I’m sorry about that,” he tweeted after CNN’s KFile dug up the quote. “Trump on the other hand chose his words deliberately today in his use of the word lynching and continues to stoke racial divides in this country daily.”
This wasn’t the right word to use and I’m sorry about that. Trump on the other hand chose his words deliberately today in his use of the word lynching and continues to stoke racial divides in this country daily. https://t.co/mHfFC8HluZ— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) October 23, 2019
On Wednesday, he offered up a longer apology and explanation.
"I was wrong to have said it. And I apologize for having said it," he told reporters in Iowa. "And I apologize for it then and I apologize for it now. The fact of the matter is it shouldn't be used at all, but the encouragement of white supremacists, which [Donald Trump has] done his entire presidency, that's what I was responding to. Because that's what it was. It was like a dog whistle...he's done it throughout — from Charlottesville on. When has he ever taken — when has he ever said a negative thing about a white supremacist? Have you heard anything? I haven't."
The apologies come after Biden excoriated President Trump for comparing impeachment to a lynching.
“Impeachment is not 'lynching,' it is part of our Constitution,” he said in response to the president's tweet. “Our country has a dark, shameful history with lynching, and to even think about making this comparison is abhorrent. It's despicable.”
Impeachment is not "lynching," it is part of our Constitution. Our country has a dark, shameful history with lynching, and to even think about making this comparison is abhorrent. It's despicable. https://t.co/QcC25vhNeb— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) October 22, 2019
Twitter users were quick to call out both Biden and CNN:
You can’t just take something back from 21 years ago.— Ryan Fournier (@RyanAFournier) October 23, 2019
The only reason you’re doing it now is because the media is telling you to do it.
Stop virtue signaling for votes.
It’s also different when CNN does it apparently pic.twitter.com/xuu54w3LAw— Stephen Miller (@redsteeze) October 23, 2019
You recently bragged about your ties to segregationists.— Arthur Schwartz (@ArthurSchwartz) October 23, 2019
Always different when your side does it, right?— Duke of Sublime (@defanta) October 23, 2019
New campaign slogan for the DNC... “It’s different when we do it”. ??— Jeff Smith (@Jeffsmith5084) October 23, 2019