President Donald Trump came under fire for comparing the House impeachment inquiry to a “lynching,” and former Vice President Joe Biden quickly faced criticism after a clip resurfaced of him doing the same.
“So some day, if a Democrat becomes President and the Republicans win the House, even by a tiny margin, they can impeach the President, without due process or fairness or any legal rights,” Trump tweeted on Tuesday. “All Republicans must remember what they are witnessing here - a lynching. But we will WIN!”
Biden condemned the tweet.
"Impeachment is not 'lynching,' it is part of our Constitution," he said. "Our country has a dark, shameful history with lynching, and to even think about making this comparison is abhorrent. It's despicable."
Even top Republicans broke with Trump after the comment.
“I don’t agree with that language, it’s pretty simple,” said House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy.
"Given the history in our country, I would not compare this to a lynching. That was an unfortunate choice of words," said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
Biden compared impeachment to lynching too:
Biden made a similar comment while defending Bill Clinton against impeachment proceedings in 1998.
"Even if the President should be impeached, history is going to question whether or not this was just a partisan lynching or whether or not it was something that in fact met the standard, the very high bar, that was set by the founders as to what constituted an impeachable offense," Biden told CNN at the time.
Biden apologizes, Trump doesn’t:
Trump has not commented on his use of the term “lynching” but Biden followed up his condemnation of Trump’s tweet with an apology of his own.
"This wasn't the right word to use and I'm sorry about that," Biden said. "Trump on the other hand chose his words deliberately today in his use of the word lynching and continues to stoke racial divides in this country daily."