Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden gave voters a glimpse of what the Justice Department would look like under his administration, saying it would be a stark contrast to what the agency has become during the president’s tenure Donald Trump.
“It was the most corrupt administration in modern American history,” Biden said during his campaign in North Carolina on Wednesday. “The Department of Justice has become the president’s private law firm.”
The former vice president noted that the agency had sought to support Trump’s defense in a libel lawsuit against writer E. Jean Carroll who accused him of rape, a charge Trump denied. Earlier this month, attorneys for the Department of Justice filed court documents aimed at substituting the United States for Trump, meaning the federal government would have to pay damages if necessary.
Biden promised that if he won the election in November, the Justice Department under his administration would be completely independent of his influence, saying “I won’t tell them who to sue, how to sue, what to sue.”
More importantly, he said, he would appoint an attorney general who “understood his oath of office”.
“It’s not a joke,” Biden added.
The quip appeared to be a blow to Attorney General William Barr, although Biden did not explicitly say his name. Barr, who was appointed by Trump in 2019, has been accused by many in the intelligence community of acting as the president’s defense attorney rather than the nation’s chief prosecutor.
Biden has said he wants an official who can “advance what the professionals in the department felt should be prosecuted without me interfering and saying ‘no, these are my friends” or “I know them” or “carry on. that person “. “
This policy would even extend to any possible investigation of Trump himself. The Democratic candidate said members of the press repeatedly asked him whether, if elected, he would push for an investigation into the 45th Commander-in-Chief.
“The answer is, I’m not going to sue anyone,” Biden said. “I’m going to do what the Justice Department says should be done and not politicize it. This is the most dangerous thing that has happened so far, the politicization of the Justice Department. It has become. Trump’s ministry, and that’s wrong. “
The remarks were made at an economic summit with members of the black community and business leaders in Charlotte, North Carolina. During the discussion, Biden highlighted aspects of his plan to “rebuild better by advancing racial equity in the American economy,” such as investing more than $ 70 billion in historically black colleges and universities and increasing the minimum wage at $ 15 an hour.
In terms of transforming the Department of Justice, especially its criminal justice division, Biden said he would increase the civil rights presence within the agency so that it can have access to all of the service’s activities. police across the county. He also promised to give the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice an office inside the White House.
Biden said that despite the turmoil brought on by the pandemic, unemployment and racial injustice, he believes there is a “huge opportunity to fundamentally change the systemic racism and system problems that exist in our system.”
“As bad as things are, the blinders have kind of been taken away from the American people now,” he said.