Former Vice President Joe Biden said that Charlamagne tha God was “baiting me” during the controversial interview where the presidential hopeful said that voting for President Donald Trump means “you ain’t black.”
As CNN reports, Biden was speaking with anchor Don Lemon when he was asked about the comment. Lemon asked which kind of leader Biden was going to be if elected: the one who makes comments of that nature, or the one who showed “empathy” toward African Americans in the wake of the death of George Floyd, who died while in police custody.
“The leader I’ve always been. I apologized immediately for responding to Charlamagne, who was baiting me, and if you looked at that film you’ll see I was smiling at him. I was referring to him,” Biden replied. “I wasn’t referring to all African Americans. I should have never said it. I have never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever taken the African-American community for granted.”
Joe Biden on his bigoted and racist comments: Charlamagne tha God was “baiting me” pic.twitter.com/oIs14Unrcu
— Steve Guest (@SteveGuest) May 29, 2020
Biden also slammed Trump’s response to Floyd’s death and the subsequent unrest gripping the nation in the wake of the incident. The former vice president called Trump out for his recent tweets, which Twitter said violated their policy against glorifying violence.
As The New York Times reported, Biden was speaking with Charlamagne on The Breakfast Club about why people should vote for him when he made the quip.
He later apologized for the comments after facing backlash from people on both sides of the political divide.
“No one, no one, should have to vote for any party based on their race, their religion, their background. There are African Americans who think that Trump was worth voting for. I don’t think so, I’m prepared to put my record against his,” he said, adding that his choice of words was unfortunate.
Biden has been vocal about his support for Floyd and those impacted by his death, saying on Friday that he “promised” that the slain man’s family would see justice for the death, as The Inquisitr reported at the time. Biden also called for average Americans to fight for systemic change to prevent brutality against black Americans in the future.
In the wake of Floyd’s death, protests and rioting erupted around the country on Friday night, with police stations, justice centers, and the CNN Center in Atlanta attacked. Fires and looting ripped through numerous cities and Portland’s mayor was forced to put a curfew in place after declaring a state of emergency.
The National Guard was deployed in Minnesota on Saturday to help with rioting.