In his latest criticism of the former commander-in-chief of the US, President Joe Biden said that Donald Trump and his Make America Great Again (MAGA) Republican supporters are determined to bring the country to its knees while damaging its democracy and institutions.

The 80-year-old Biden did not spare the party members of Donald Trump in Congress who he also termed extremists.

In an interview aired Sunday, Biden termed Donald Trump’s MAGA Republican movement a threat.

The Democrat told ProPublica: “I think that this is the last gasp or maybe the first big gasp of the MAGA Republicans. And I think Trump has concluded that he has to win.”

In his new attacks, Biden said: “[Trump] will pull out all the stops. I mean, the quotes he uses are just — I never thought I’d hear a president say some of the stuff he says.”

Days earlier, Biden launched attacks on Trump terming him an “extremist” who was posing a grave threat to American democracy and institutions.

Biden regarded Trump as driven by “vengeance and vindictiveness”, calling his hard-right Republican friends posing a threat to the freedom of speech and the supremacy of the law.

Former US president Donald Trump delivers his speech as seen on a screen in the spillover room at the Anaheim Mariott on September 29, 2023. — AFP
Former US president Donald Trump delivers his speech as seen on a screen in the spillover room at the Anaheim Mariott on September 29, 2023. — AFP

“We should all remember: democracies don’t have to die the end of a rifle,” the commander-in-chief had said adding that “they can die when people are silent when they fail to stand up or condemn threats to democracy.”

In his accusations on the 77-year-old, Biden said: “Trump and the MAGA Republicans are determined to destroy American democracy,” rebuking “extremists in Congress who want to burn the place down.”

In his Arizona speech Thursday, Biden avoided commenting on the former president’s criminal indictments including Trump’s role in subverting 2020 election results that caused a brutal riot which attacked the US Capitol on January 6, 2021.

However, the Democrat did not hold back in the speech about what he said the country would risk from a second Trump term.

“They’re not hiding their attacks. They’re openly promoting them, attacking the free press as the enemy of the people, attacking the rule of law, fulminating voter suppression.”

Biden criticised Republicans in particular for failing to speak up after Donald Trump recently accused a top US military officer of treason, and lashed out at hardline Trump-allied Republicans for pushing America towards a government shutdown this week.

But Biden reserved some of his toughest words for Trump himself, unusually addressing him by name instead of referring to the Republican as he usually does as his “predecessor” or “the last guy”.

Donald Trump was criminally charged four times in a number of cases ranging from paying hush money to election subversion in Georgia.

He is facing indictments in cases that include provoking people on his false claims of rigged elections leading to the January 6 2021 riots, retaining classified documents after leaving the Oval Office and election interference and criminal racketeering to overturn the election results in the state of Georgia.

While responding to the question of Trump’s disqualification, Biden avoided making an opinion noting that “a lot of serious constitutional scholars” disagree on the matter.

He stated: “I worry because I know that if the other team of MAGA Republicans win, they don’t want to pull the rule of law, they want to get rid of the FBI.”

Biden cautioned that democracy is in jeopardy in other parts of the world as well and that it would be cataclysmic for the free world if it fails here.

A number of voters in the US showed uneasiness over Biden seeking a second term, Currently, he is the US president in history and will become 86 by the end of a second term were he to reelect in the office.

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