President Biden accused former President Donald Trump of causing harm on the international stage, claiming that he has had to pick up the pieces of the previous administration.
The president was in Pennsylvania speaking to the AFL-CIO at the labor organization’s Quadrennial Constitutional Convention on Tuesday when he included some pointed words directed at his predecessor.
“I travel the world trying to put things back together. You know, Trump did not leave a very good situation,” Biden said. “You think I’m kidding? No matter where I go in the world, whether it was the Inter-American Conference we just had for this hemisphere, or NATO, or dealing with the ASEAN countries, or the Far East, guess what? They look at me and I say, I say, ‘America is back.’ And they look at me, and they say, ‘For how long?’”
Biden delivered the remarks at a crucial time in his presidency when it comes to international politics. The President just returned from a trip to Asia that included meetings with leaders of Japan, South Korea, India, and Australia. A remark during that trip caused tension with China, when Biden said he would take military action to defend Taiwan if China invaded. The White House swiftly walked back the comment.
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Now, Biden is preparing for a Middle Eastern voyage where he will visit Israel and Saudi Arabia, meeting with the leaders of those nations, other Arab countries, and the Palestinian authority. A senior administration official pointed to the strategic importance of a U.S. alliance with Saudi Arabia, despite Biden saying during his presidential campaign that he would turn them into a “pariah.”
Meanwhile, the president and his administration have been criticized for failing to deter Russia from invading Ukraine, and for a withdrawal from Afghanistan that allowed the Taliban to immediately retake control of the country while Americans were left behind trying to get home.