Published:  12:38 AM, 11 October 2019

For 1st time, Biden declares Trump must be impeached

For 1st time, Biden declares Trump must be impeached Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden
US Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden said Wednesday for the first time that President Donald Trump must be impeached for abusing the powers of his office to help his own reelection.

Biden made the remarks as part of a blistering 25-minute speech in New Hampshire, departing from his usual campaign pitch and signaling that he will aggressively confront Trump as the president faces an impeachment inquiry rooted in his unfounded accusations that the former vice president and his son had nefarious dealings in Ukraine.

Trump is "shooting holes in the Constitution," Biden said, by asking foreign powers to find dirt on the Bidens and then refusing to cooperate with the resulting House impeachment inquiry. "This is a president who has decided this nation doesn't have the tools, the power, the political will" to punish bad behavior, Biden said, cataloguing a litany of Trump's actions that the former vice president said warrant impeachment.

The speech comes after two weeks of uneven responses from Biden as he and his advisers debated internally the best way to handle Trump's broadsides. Biden had alternated between muted dismissals at a series of fundraisers and more aggressive public displays, urging reporters to "ask the right questions," promising he'd beat Trump "like a drum" and using a campaign rally in Reno, Nevada, to hammer the president.

His New Hampshire speech, though, was his most thorough, visible retort to date, with his impeachment call timed at midday to ensure that it carries the news cycle. "He's not just testing us," Biden said. "He's laughing at us." Before Biden had concluded in New Hampshire, Trump retorted via Twitter.

---AP, Rochester

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