Joe Biden lambasted President Donald Trump for continuing “to lie” about the state of the Covid-19 pandemic during a campaign stop in Durham, North Carolina on Sunday.
Biden highlighted increasing case counts, which on Friday reached their highest single-day total since late July, before pointing to recent remarks the president made downplaying the virus.
“Yet, the other night, Trump said in one of his rallies, ‘we’ve turned the corner,'” Biden said. “As my grandfather would say, this guy’s gone around the bend if he thinks we’ve turned the corner. Turn the corner? Things are getting worse. He continues to lie to us about the circumstances.”
Mentioning remarks Trump made to the journalist Bob Woodward in which he said he downplayed the severity of the virus so that people would not panic, Biden said, “The American people do not panic — Trump panicked.”
The drive-in rally featured attendees chanting and honking from their cars. As one rallygoer shouted: “Send him home, Joe.”
The president has in recent days repeatedly said that the country is “rounding the corner” when it comes to the pandemic.
“We are rounding the corner and we have — unbelievable,” Trump said at a rally in Janesville, Wisconsin Saturday. “The vaccines are unbelievable. Except for a little politics. We have unbelievable vaccines coming out real soon. And the therapeutics are unbelievable.”
The president has talked up the available therapeutics for Covid-19 after he contracted the virus and earlier this month was treated with an antibody cocktail, Remdesivir, and a heavy steroid typically associated with more severe cases.
Covid-19 cases are on the rise nationwide with hospitalizations beginning to tick up as well. Deaths have trailed off since early August, but tend to be a lagging indicator of a pandemic’s severity.
So far, more than 220,000 Americans have died of Covid-19, according to an NBC News tracker.
Biden holds a slim lead over Trump in North Carolina, several recent polls show.