Joe Biden has warned that military officers could remove Donald Trump from the White House if he loses the November election but refuses to leave.
Biden aired his views on Wednesday night in an interview with “The Daily Show” host Trevor Noah. Asked what might happen if Trump loses the election, but doesn’t vacate the White House, Biden suggested the top-ranking military officers who have spoken out against the President could settle the matter swiftly.
“I promise you, I’m absolutely convinced they will escort him from the White House with great dispatch,” he said.
Biden also said in the interview that “this president is going to try to steal this election,” and went on to reveal that his “single greatest concern” is possible election fraud by Trump.
Tim Murtaugh, communications director for the Trump Campaign, told Variety in response: “This is just another brainless conspiracy theory from Joe Biden as he continues to try to undermine confidence in our elections.
“It was the Obama Administration that tried to subvert an election by spying on the Trump campaign in 2016 and Biden himself was part of the effort to sabotage the incoming Trump Administration because they couldn’t live with President Trump’s victory. President Trump has been clear that he will accept the results of the 2020 election.”
Noah also pressed Biden on his stance around defunding the police — a concept that has ignited national interest on following the Minneapolis City Council’s move to disband its police department in the wake of the death of George Floyd in police custody.
Noah inquired, “If you were to become president, would there be a world where defunding the police would be the solution?” Biden responded by saying “a lot of changes can take place, period, without defunding the police completely.”
“I don’t think police should be defunded, but I think the conditions should be placed upon them where departments are having to take significant reforms relating to [whether] we should set up a national use of force standard,” he continued.
Biden said if a department doesn’t support a national “use of force” initiative “then they don’t get any of the federal money.” He also suggested police departments must “demonstrate that they release all data relating to misconduct by police. That has to be sent to the justice department, and if they don’t, they don’t get funding.”
The former vice president said police reform was one part of “many changes” that could be made, and also related to approaches to mental illness and homelessness.
“My daughter is a social worker, and the idea that she will respond by herself to a 9-1-1 call that says someone is overdosing or someone has a mental problem and is acting out…is not rational to expect,” said Biden. “Conversely, cops shouldn’t go alone. They should go with people who are mental health experts.”
Biden advocated for “building trust” between law enforcement and communities. Increased safety, he said, would come with greater funding for community police.
“When we were funding in community policing, the crime rate went down and the extent of brutality went down, too, because people know who’s in their community,” said Biden. “But it’s much bigger than that — and complicated. We should turn over as much as we can to non-armed police officers to de-escalate things relating to mental illness, homelessness and drug abuse.”
Biden secured the Democratic nomination on Saturday after securing 1,992 delegates.
After Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders dropped out of the race in April, Biden has been the presumptive Democratic nominee ahead of the presidential election this year. The former vice president will likely officially claim the nomination at the Democratic National Convention, which will be held in August. It’s unclear whether the convention will take place in-person or virtually in light of the coronavirus pandemic.
Biden previously slammed President Trump’s response to the protests around the U.S. in the wake of Floyd’s death, as well as a press conference held outside the White House.
“I’m once again asking every American who feels knocked down, counted out, and left behind, to join our campaign.” he wrote.
“Because we aren’t just building the movement that will defeat Donald Trump, we are building the movement that will transform our nation. I truly believe that when we stand together, finally, as One America, we will rise stronger than before. This is the United States of America. There is nothing we can’t do, if we do it together.”
Watch a portion of the interview below: