Former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenOn The Money: Pelosi says no debt ceiling hike until deal on spending caps | McConnell pressures White House to strike budget deal | Warren bill would wipe out billions in student debt | Senate passes IRS reform bill On The Money: Pelosi says no debt ceiling hike until deal on spending caps | McConnell pressures White House to strike budget deal | Warren bill would wipe out billions in student debt | Senate passes IRS reform bill Hillicon Valley: Tim Cook visits White House | House hearing grapples with deepfake threat | Bill, Melinda Gates launch lobbying group | Tech turns to K-Street in antitrust fight | Lawsuit poses major threat to T-Mobile, Sprint merger MORE doubled down Friday on his criticism of President TrumpDonald John TrumpNew York activists go on hunger strike to advocate for ending solitary confinement Sanders says he would inform FBI about offers of foreign intel Sanders says he would inform FBI about offers of foreign intel MORE'ssuggestion that he wouldlisten if a foreign entityoffered negative information on a political opponent, saying thepresident is"dead wrong."
This is simple. American elections should be decided by the American people and not by Russian or any other foreign power," Biden, the 2020 Democratic frontrunner, said in a statement released by his campaign."Donald Trump doesnt think it matters if candidates accept damaging intel on their opponent from a foreign government. Hes dead wrong, he continued.
Biden also announced that he signed a candidate pledge, formed earlier this year as part of his work withEuropean leaders in the Transatlantic Commission on Election Integrity, vowingnot to use disinformation in his campaign or tolerate outside information.
The former vice president first hit Trump on the comments in a tweet on Wednesday evening.
President Trump is once again welcoming foreign interference in our elections. This isnt about politics. It is a threat to our national security. An American President should not seek their aid and abet those who seek to undermine democracy.
Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) June 13, 2019
Biden's commentscome as the president has faced fierce bipartisan backlash for the statement, made during aninterview on ABC News.
Trump toldthe network that he would listen if a foreign entity offered damaging information on a political opponent.
"I think you might want to listen. Theres nothing wrong with listening,"Trumpsaidin the interview."Its not an interference. They have information. I think Id take it.If I thought there was something wrong, Id go maybe to the FBI."
The president defended the comments on Twitter on Thursday, citing his contacts with foreign governments as a part of his job.
"I meet and talk to 'foreign governments' every day. I just met with the Queen of England (U.K.), the Prince of Whales, the P.M. of the United Kingdom, the P.M. of Ireland, the President of France and the President of Poland. We talked about 'Everything!'" Trump said in a tweet.
"Should I immediately call the FBI about these calls and meetings?" he continued. "How ridiculous! I would never be trusted again."
Republicans were left shaking their heads over what many of them saw as a sloppy gaffe by the president, who didnt appear to understand that what he was suggesting was against the law. The comment has drawn opposition from members of both parties, and a harsh rebuke from chair of the Federal Election Commission.
Biden's firing back marksthe latest in an ongoing war of words with the president. Both were on the campaign trail in Iowa earlier this week and took jabs at each other in speeches and on Twitter.
Despite being one of the numerous Democratic presidential hopefuls, Biden has focused on Trump throughout the campaign instead of his Democratic rivals.
Meanwhile, the president's apparentfocus on Biden has led many to believe he is worried about the former vice president's front-runner status in the Democratic primary.
--Updated Friday, 8:17 a.m.