Recently, former Vice President Joe Biden released an add that used teen vigilante Kyle Rittenhouse, the man who shot three people and killed two of them, as an example of violence in Kenosha, Wisconsin caused by the right. The ad in question was released on Twitter with the heading:
There’s no other way to put it: the President of the United States refused to disavow white supremacists on the debate stage last night.
As such, many took this to mean Biden was calling Rittenhouse a white supremacist, a statement that even the Anti-Defamation League, a group known for being able to dig up dirt on anyone, said there was no evidence Rittenhouse was connected with White Supremacists.
Lin Wood, his attorney and creator of his defensive fund, said the following on Twitter:
The only thing that saves Chris Wallace is that he did not use Kyle’s name or likeness. @JoeBiden & his campaign recklessly did. Meets the “of and concerning” requirement of libel law. Joe is going to be sued. Successfully.
The next day, the Trump campaign Twitter account Trump War Room, posted a picture of Joe Biden doing the okay sign with the caption:
Last week Joe Biden flashed the “white power” sign. President Trump condemned white supremacists yesterday. Why hasn’t Joe Biden?
But wait a minute, if calling someone a racist without evidence is a suable offensive, does that mean Biden can sue this account? Can Biden sue Candance Owens for implying he’s a racist in tweets such as this one:
Joe Biden says Trump is the worst President America has ever had. Not the presidents that permitted slavery. Not the President that signed Jim Crow Laws into effect. But Trump.
Can Biden sue radio host Mark Levin, for saying on his Fox News show that he’s a racist? And could he sue Fox News, for republishing it with this line:
In 1975, according to Levin, then-Sen. Biden told The Philadelphia Inquirer that the Democratic Party could “stand a liberal George Wallace. Someone who’s not afraid to stand up and offend people.” That same year, Biden called the concept of desegregation busing a “rejection of the whole movement of Black pride.”
Of course, by “liberal George Wallace” he meant in terms of rhetoric, not in terms of ideas. Biden said in 1976 that if George Wallace got the Democratic nomination, he’d vote for the re-election of President Ford. However, you more than likely only heard them in response to an unearth clip of Senator Bernie Sanders saying Wallace became popular because of his populism being released.
Can Biden sue Donald Trump for falsely clamming Biden called black kids “superpredators” during the first Presidential debate? Remember, being called racist is so bad that lying about it can be libel — a crime usually only used in reference to lying about somebody doing something illegal.
Can Barack Obama sue Josh Krashaar for this misleading claim calling the longest serving Senator in United History nothing more than “a former Klansman”?
Flashback: President Obama eulogized West Virginia Sen. Robert Byrd — a former Klansman — for living a life that “bent towards justice.”
I’m seriously asking, because it seems like if we open up this precedent that you can sue people over false claims of racism, Joe Biden has more of a right to sue people than anyone else.
Although he’s far from alone, Senator Dick Durban was smeared as a racist for calling Senator Tim Scott’s police reform bill “a token effort.” Bill Clinton, formally known by black people as our first black President, has been called a racist due to his 1994 Crime Bill. Planned Parenthood has been accused of full on eugenics by pro-life activists like Lila Rose, can Planned Parenthood sue her for libel?
I ask this because, despite the popular perception, Republicans have just as big of an issue regarding false cries of racism as Democrats do. According to them, racism in the 20th century was only caused by Democrats, in spite of the KKK having more control over Indiana then they did any other state. In spite of Republican President Theodore Roosevelt writing letters to eugenicist Charles Davenport praising his theory. In spite of Newt Gingrich saying that it was Democrats who ended segregation during his 1995 Acceptance Speech when he first became Speaker Of The House.
Republicans do not want this precedent, in spite of what they think.