"Well, oh God, Anthony Weiner," Biden said
Biden also discussed life after the vice presidency, the Supreme Court and Donald Trump
Vice President Joe Biden is “not a big fan” of disgraced former Rep. Anthony Weiner.
In a wide-ranging interview with CNN’s Michael Smerconish – in which Biden also discussed life after the vice presidency, the Supreme Court and Donald Trump – the vice president said FBI Director James Comey should release the newly discovered emails that are connected to the bureau’s probe of Hillary Clinton’s private server.
Law enforcement sources told CNN Friday that a probe into Weiner triggered the review of the emails. The FBI and the New York Police Department have opened preliminary investigations of allegations that Weiner exchanged sexually explicit text messages with a purportedly underage girl.
“I think Hillary – if she said, what I’m told she said, is correct – release the emails. For the whole world to see,” Biden said in the interview, a portion of which was released Friday night.
“To the best of my knowledge, it won’t prejudice the investigation, but that’s the stilted language the agency always uses,” he continued. “And it doesn’t mean anything. It’s unfortunate.”
Weiner, the former Democratic representative from New York, recently separated from top Clinton aide Huma Abedin in light of the sexting incident over the summer.
When asked about Weiner’s involvement in the emails, Biden said he didn’t want to comment.
“Well, oh God, Anthony Weiner,” Biden said. “I should not comment on Anthony Weiner. I’m not a big fan. I wasn’t before he got in trouble. So I shouldn’t comment on Anthony Weiner.”
When asked if the renewed Clinton email controversy made Biden regret not running for president, he defended his decision to stay out of the election.
“I thought I could beat Hillary. I thought I could beat anybody that ran. No one should run for president unless they think they can do that,” Biden replied. “I didn’t run for one simple, overarching reason: My son was dying and he died. That’s the total reason. I have great respect for Hillary.”
He was also asked about reports that he was on a list of possible choices for secretary of state if Clinton were to win the White House.
On life after the vice presidency
“I will do anything that she wants if she’s elected president to help her. But I’m not looking to be in the administration. It’s time for me to move on,” Biden said.
He also said he’s not considering a role on the Supreme Court, either.
“Look, Michael, there’s a lot of things I want to do – cancer moonshot, other things I want to work on, and I’m not going away. I plan on being as deeply engaged as I am now in the capacity of a citizen that has more of a platform and the ability to convene people,” Biden said.
Biden and the working class
Smerconish asked Biden, who received a standing ovation at a Philadelphia Eagles game in September, why he is so popular among the working class of the United States.
“Look, it’s where I come from, Michael,” Biden said. “I think that both parties, we pay attention in terms of policy but not in terms of our attention … They’re not looking for anybody to be sorry for them. They want people to recognize this is a struggle.”
He said Trump hasn’t done anything for the working class in the United States.
“People are upset and angry. They hate the dysfunction of Washington. Trump comes along and talks about how he’s going to change all that, he’s this breath of fresh air. And then people started to see who he is,” Biden said. “Donald Trump’s offering nothing, nothing, zero for those folks.”
Biden acknowledged that Americans don’t trust Clinton, but said “fewer people” trust Trump.
“Look at the polls,” Biden said. “Fewer people trust him than trust her. And so this is not a case where one person is really trusted and another person isn’t.”
Biden said that if Clinton is elected president, she should renominate federal appeals court judge Merrick Garland as a Supreme Court justice. His nomination has stalled in the Republican-controlled Senate since President Barack Obama nominated him to succeed late Justice Antonin Scalia in March.
“I think she should stick with Garland, but that’s her choice,” Biden said.
On Donald Trump
Smerconish asked Biden about his comment last week when he said he wished he “could take (Trump) behind the gym” in light of the GOP nominee’s vulgar comments about women that surfaced earlier this month.
“I was making a point,” Biden said. “I think it’s insulting to say … that we talk like that. This is not ‘locker room talk.’ And you know as well as I know Michael … if somebody in the locker room talked that way, and your sister’s outside with her friends, you know what you do. You know what you do. You don’t let it go on.”
Biden also slammed Trump’s leaked 2005 hot mic conversation, where he bragged about being able to grope women because he is a celebrity. Trump defended it as a “locker room talk,” but Biden called it sexual assault.
“We have to change the culture in which we talk about women and we treat women. It’s essential,” Biden said. “And it’s been something that’s been one of the causes of my life. And here’s the guy who says, ‘Because I am a star’ – implicitly – ‘Because I have a lot of money, I can walk out and grope any woman I want.’ That is a textbook definition of sexual assault … Think how crude this campaign has become.”
Biden said Trump is “fully unqualified” to be president. But he insisted that if Trump becomes the next commander in chief, he would be willing to lend a hand.
“I’m going to stay involved as much as I possibly can. This is the time after (November) 9, after the election is over, no matter who wins, reach out,” he said, adding, “I pray that doesn’t happen. I want Hillary to be president.”