Nov 2, 2020
Joe Biden Drive-in Rally Speech Transcript Cleveland November 2
Joe Biden held a drive-in campaign rally event in Cleveland, Ohio on November 2. Read the transcript of his speech remarks here.
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Speaker 1: (00:00)
… centers, the living room down the block. You’ll be where? Okay, we’ll be there. Who are we?
Speaker 1: (00:15)
We are the movement that will beat Donald Trump.
Speaker 1: (00:19)
Welcome. We’re going to have to sweat for it. We’re going to have to sacrifice and fight. We’re going to have to lead. Everyone is going to have to lead with kindness, humility, empathy, and not just talk, but action. Action today. Action tomorrow. Action until we win. And we will win if we do this together. It’s who we are. It’s who we always have. Now, let’s show them.
Speaker 2: (01:02)
As a reminder, today’s event has been set up to adhere to social distancing guidelines as outlined by health experts in the state of Ohio. Thank you for being here.
Speaker 3: (01:27)
Please. Welcome Courtney Mosley.
Courtney Mosley: (01:56)
Good morning, everyone. My name is Courtney Mosley and I am a local attorney and secretary for the Northeast, Ohio Young Black Democrats. Cleveland is a city I am proud to call home. I was born here, raised here, and despite yesterday’s game, I am still a loyal Cleveland Browns fan. I’ve seen first hand the impact this president’s inaction and indifference that has had on my community. People are hurting. Businesses are shuttered. Our people have lost their jobs and too many families have lost a loved one. And the truth is, it didn’t have to be this bad. It doesn’t have to be this bad. And we can make it better by voting for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. With so much on the ballot, the stakes in this election couldn’t be any higher. And the choice, well, it couldn’t be any clearer. Joe Biden understands the issues we face and will provide the strong leadership and unity. We need to move our country forward. I’m voting for Joe and Kamala because I know they’ve got my back. They see me and they’ll fight for me. They have a plan to get this virus under control, to get our economy back on track and to build Ohio better than it was before. For healthcare, for jobs, for justice, for education, and for a clear, brighter future, the choice is clear. We need Joe Biden and Kamala Harris’s leadership in the White House.
Courtney Mosley: (04:08)
Just a few months ago, the pundits and pollsters said we didn’t have a shot in Ohio. Now, a day before the election, we’re neck and neck in what has become this country’s closest race. Ohio, we’re so close, but there’s more work left to do. We can’t let up just yet. We need to work for it. We need to turn up and turn out like our lives and our futures depend on it, because it does.
Courtney Mosley: (04:52)
If you have a ballot, turn it in. If you haven’t voted, make a plan. If you haven’t reached out to friends and family, do it now. We don’t want to wake up on November 4th wondering if we did enough. It is up to us to bring this home for Joe and for Kamala. If we win Ohio, we deny Trump another four years, period. It’s that simple. We can’t afford to let this opportunity pass us by. We need to do everything we can to turn every voter and elect Joe Biden, Kamala Harris and Democrats down the ballot. I’m fired up, I’m ready to go, and I hope you are too.
Courtney Mosley: (05:57)
And with that, it gives me great honor to introduce the next president of the United States, Joe Biden.
Joe Biden: (06:18)
Hello, Cleveland. Whoa. Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you. And you guys can push the other something real quick, I tell you. Thank you very, very much. And Courtney, thank you for that introduction. And I want to thank Representative Marcia Fudge. We’ve been hanging out in the back here in the tent, along with [inaudible 00:06:51] out there, and Joyce is out here. Joyce Beattie, I can’t see it. Oh, there you are. Okay, I see you guys. And by the way, I want you all to meet, I got four of my grandchildren with me today. All my grandkids, stand up, stand up.
Joe Biden: (07:07)
They’re my good luck charms. They’re my heart. And Marcy and Joyce and Tim Ryan. Tim, you over there too? Hey, Tim. Tim, you’ve been so great the whole campaign. Thank you very, very, very much. And he as tough as nails. They’re all incredible leaders and we need to send them back to Congress, every single one of them.
Joe Biden: (07:36)
Folks, I want to thank my buddy, Sherrod Brown. No one fights harder for the dignity of working people than Sherrod does. Sherrod won reelection in ’18 about at the same margin that Trump did. And so when Sherrod tells me to come to Ohio the day before, I come to Ohio. That’s what I do because he and I have something in common. We married way up. He married a Pulitzer prize winner. I married a professor, and I tell you what, Connie you’ve been wonderful. Connie actually reviewed my wife’s book, I found out.
Joe Biden: (08:14)
Anyway, I want to thank you for being here. Folks, Ohio, one more day, one more day. Tomorrow. Tomorrow we have an opportunity to put an annual presidency. That’s divided this nation. Tomorrow we can put an ad to a president as has failed to protect this nation. And tomorrow we can put it down to a president who has fanned the flames of hate all across this country. Millions of Americans have already voted. Almost a hundred million have voted so far, a hundred million voted already, and more are going to vote today. And my message is simple. The power to change the country is in your hands. I don’t care how much Donald Trump tries, there’s nothing, nothing…
Joe Biden: (09:03)
No matter how much Donald Trump tries, there’s nothing, nothing he’s going to do to stop the people in this nation from voting. Folks, he hasn’t figured it out. Presidents don’t determine who gets to vote. Voters determine who’s going to be the president. When America votes, America will be heard. When America is heard, I believe the message is going to be loud and clear. It’s time for Donald Trump to pack his bags and go home. We’re done. We’re done with the chaos. We’re done with the tweets, the anger, the hate, the failure, the irresponsibility. We’ve got a whole lot of work to do.
Joe Biden: (09:45)
When I’m elected your president, I’m going to act, and I’m going to act on day one. Folks, we’re going to act to get this COVID under control. On day one of my presidency, we’re going to put it in action a plan that I’ve been talking about for months, and he’s been paying no attention to. Masking, social distancing, testing, tracing. A plan for a fair and full and free distribution of therapeutics and vaccines, when we get one. Imagine, imagine where we’d be, had this president, from the beginning, just wore a mask instead of mock wearing a mask.
Joe Biden: (10:19)
I can tell you this. We wouldn’t have 9 million confirmed COVID cases in this nation, wouldn’t have over 230,000 deaths, wouldn’t be seen those new record numbers of cases we’re seeing every single day, right now. Nearly 100,000 cases in one day, just two days ago. 100,000 new cases. We wouldn’t be facing another 200,000 projected deaths in the next few months.
Joe Biden: (10:51)
This president knew, last January, the virus was deadly, but he hid it from the American people. He knew it was worse than the flu. He lied to the American people. He knew it wasn’t going to disappear, but he kept telling us a miracle was coming. And just Friday, you had the gall… Figure this, now. The president of the United States of America, who’s responsible for so many deaths, he had the gall to suggest that American doctors, the people who have been on the front lines of this crisis for nine months, along with nurses and so many others, many of whom have died, to suggest that doctors are falsely inflating deaths due to COVID because they want to make more money.
Joe Biden: (11:41)
I’m serious, man. This guy’s a disgrace. The people of this nation have suffered. They’ve sacrificed for nine months, not more than those doctors and nurses and those healthcare workers. And this president is questioning their character, their integrity, their commitment to their fellow Americans. As I said, it’s a disgrace. And last night, Trump said he was going to fire Dr. Fauci. Isn’t that wonderful? I got a better idea. Elect me, and I’m going to hire Dr. Fauci, and we’re going to fire Donald Trump.
Joe Biden: (12:25)
Donald Trump waved the white flag of surrender to this virus. He did that. His own chief of staff said, last week, we’re giving up on the virus. We’re not going to do anything about it. I’m never going to raise the white flag and surrender. We’re going to beat this virus. We’re going to get it under control, I promise you. Look, the first step to beating the virus is beating Donald Trump.
Joe Biden: (12:58)
Donald Trump keeps telling us what a great jobs president he is. I was just with Barack in Detroit and Flint. It was great to be with a president of some character, a president respected around the world, a president our kids could and did look up to. But did you know that, after President Obama and I bet on American workers and helped rescue the auto industry, nearly 500,000 jobs created here in Ohio. Meanwhile, 330,000 of those have been lost since Trump’s become president. You know, Donald Trump is going to be the first president in 90 years… that’s a lot of presidents… in 90 years, is going to finish his four years in office with fewer jobs than when he got elected to office.
Joe Biden: (13:47)
It’s no surprise. Remember the lies he told all the workers. He told the families of the GM plant in Lordstown. He said, “Don’t move. Don’t sell your house.” But then the plant shut down. And after the first debate in Cleveland, I met an Ohio woman named Tiffany whose husband lost their job at the plant. And he had to take a job eight hours away in another state. He drives home weekends, 16 hours round trip, to be home with his kids. So much for “Don’t worry.”
Joe Biden: (14:25)
What about his threat and his grudge against Goodyear? What about his broken promise to protect pensions for workers, especially [inaudible 00:14:35] employer pensions? And what about… He stopped the overtime for millions of American workers, over $1,200,000,000 for American workers, the president and I was helping your delegation put in place. But let’s not forget how Donald Trump is wreaking chaotic with China on trade. Farm bankruptcies are way up. Exports are way down. Agricultural exports to China during the Trump years have been 40% lower than they were when we were in our second term.
Joe Biden: (15:07)
And he even says, because of his bailouts to the farmers… that’s your tax dollars, by the way… his bailout of the farmers, “Our farmers are doing better now than when they actually had a farm.” Can you believe that? Our farmers are doing better now than when they actually had a farm because they were able to be bailed out, although they may not have a farm anymore.
Joe Biden: (15:36)
Who does this guy think he is? My policies are going to hold China accountable. I’ll end the Trump tax loopholes that incentivized companies to ship jobs overseas. I’ll add a 10% surtax on companies who do ship jobs overseas. But for companies who bring and come back and invest in American manufacturing and bring jobs back home, I’ll offer a 10% tax credit. And folks, it’s no violation of any trade agreement, but no government contracts. And the president has about $600 billion in contracts from the military on down. No government contract will be given it to a company that isn’t have all the products, including the supply line, all products made in America, every product.
Joe Biden: (16:35)
Look, and our future will be made right here, right here in Ohio. Folks, we’re in a position that we can do so much more, so much more. Folks, Donald Trump forgot and betrayed Ohio workers. Quite frankly, I grew up around guys like Donald Trump. I grew up in neighborhoods like probably many of you did, working class neighborhoods where most people didn’t have a college education. But we had guys like Trump we used to play against, when we played ball and Scranton and [inaudible 00:08:07]. And because they had more money than we did, they kind of look down their nose on us.
Joe Biden: (17:16)
I got to admit to you. I got a bit of a chip on my shoulder, when I read about… Once we won the nomination and things began to look a little better, I read from serious press people… they’re decent, honorable people… that if I get elected, I’ll be the first president who didn’t have an Ivy League degree, in a long time. Well, let me tell you something. Somehow that’s got to mean I didn’t belong, because I went to a state university. But let me tell you what. It’s about time a guy from a state university graduated into the White House because, if I’m there, you’re going to be there, too. Look, Trump sees the world from Park Avenue, looking down-
Joe Biden: (18:03)
Trump sees the world from Park Avenue, looking down on Wall Street. I see it from Scranton and Claymont, where I grew up. I shaved from here in Cleveland. Wall Street didn’t build America, the middle class built America. And guess what? Unions built the middle class. That’s a fact. The day is long past time, we start rewarding work, not wealth in this country. Under my plan, if you make less than $400,000, you won’t pay a single penny, more in taxes. You have my word on it. But I tell you what, the wealthiest of MOS, big corporations, 91 of which don’t pay any tax, that paid zero federal income tax. They’re going to start paying their fair share. Why? Listen to me, why should a firefighter, an educator, a cop, why should a welder, why should a steel worker pay the higher tax rate than the super wealthy?
Joe Biden: (19:10)
It’s not right. Why should you pay for taxes than Donald Trump for God’s sake? Look, I released 22 years of my tax returns. You can look them up online. Donald Trump didn’t release any. Wonder what the hell he’s hiding. I wonder why he won’t let anybody know what his tax returns are. Who’s he owe the money to? This is the guy, by the way we found out recently has a secret bank account in China. Paid 50 times more tax in Beijing than he did in the United States. And overall, the one income tax the New York Times got, he paid $750 in federal taxes. How about you? And when he was asked how he could pay so little, remember what he said? He said, “because I’m smart. I know how to game the system.” And that’s the kind of guy you want as president? That can game the system, be a billionaire pay 750 bucks in taxes. While you all break your necks, break your necks to pay a fair share.
Joe Biden: (20:29)
We’re going to act to protect healthcare by the way. Trump and Republicans just jammed through a new Supreme Court nomination for one basic reason. Within a week after the election, they’re going to be before the Supreme Court and this new nominee is going to be out of the court. It’s all about destroying the Affordable Care Act, getting rid of it completely. They’ve been trying to do it now for nine years, if they get their way, 100 million Americans will lose protections for preexisting conditions, including nearly 5 million folks here in Ohio. Look, Donald Trump doesn’t understand healthcare. He thinks it’s a privilege. I think healthcare is a right.
Joe Biden: (21:23)
By the way, because of the way he ruined the economy, even before the pandemic, 10 million Americans have already lost their employer-based healthcare because the employer has gone out of business. Now he wants to go after the 22 million, who have healthcare only because of the Affordable Care Act. I’m not only restore the Affordable Care Act, I’ll build on it. You can keep your private insurance, or you can choose a Medicare-like public option in the new plan. I’m going to increase subsidies and lower premiums and deductibles, out of pocket expenses and surprise billings. We’re going to reduce drug costs by 60% by allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices for all of us. Folks, folks, it’s going to cost more money, but guess how I’m going to pay for it? Trump’s going to start paying some taxes.
Joe Biden: (22:25)
We’re going to make sure we keep protections for people with pre-existing conditions. Meanwhile, the Social Security expert, the person the Social Security department says if Donald Trump’s plan that he announced, if he’s reelected, he’s going to put in place, if in fact it’s put in place, it would bankrupt Social Security by 2023. This guy really cares a lot about this, doesn’t he? He really understands, [inaudible 00:22:56] my parents before me and everyone else paying into Social Security. So go home and tell your parents and grandparents, what a great deal they’re going to get if Trump gets reelected. But folks, the fact is I’m going to protect your Social Security. I guarantee it. Because I got people behind me who’re going to make sure it’s protected. We’re going to protect Social Security, and we’re going to have a situation where guess what? We have a majority in the United States Senate. Well, folks, look, the thing that’s bothered me most, maybe emotionally bothered me the most, but substantively as well. That this president has done, there’s been nothing worse than the way he’s spoken about those who have served in uniform. He called you all losers and suckers. My son Beau was the attorney general of the state of Delaware. My son Beau volunteered. He had to give up the seat of attorney general to volunteer, to go to Iraq for a year. He won the Bronze Star, the Conspicuous Service Medal, and he saw the people die in Iraq. He was not a loser. He was not a sucker, he was a Patriot, just like all your sons and daughters, parents, or grandparents who served. Folks, six generals who worked in the white house with the president of United States and admirals worked in his administration have since left. And they’ve said he is unfit to be Commander in Chief. Best of my knowledge, that’s never happened before for any president of the United States. And that’s why special operations commander Stanley McChrystal, as well as the commander special ops and the Navy Seals who took out Brin Laden, along Bill McRaven, Admiral McRaven, along with 22 other four stars, they’ve endorsed me saying they’d be proud to have me as their Commander in Chief.
Joe Biden: (25:16)
This president likes to portray himself as a tough guy, a macho man. When the last time you saw a president of United States, literally being laughed at by the world leaders when he spoke to the United Nations? I don’t ever recall that ever happening. Can you believe when the president of United States, who acts like Vladimir Putin’s puppy, Putin put bounties on the heads of American soldiers in Afghanistan. Trump spoke to him six times and he was too frightened to challenge him. Why? Donald Trump is not strong, he’s weak. This is a president who not only doesn’t understand sacrifice, he doesn’t understand courage. Physical courage it takes for so many of you to put on that uniform. We must support our military. Let’s make this vote for them as well. God love them.
Joe Biden: (26:16)
We have to vote to meet the challenge, the climate crisis as well. We can act to meet that climate crisis. Trump calls the climate crisis a hoax. I see it as a great opportunity to improve our health as well as great millions of good paying jobs. I see America’s working to build and install 500,000 charging stations all across this country. American consumers switching to clean electric vehicles. We can own the electric vehicle market, creating minutes of jobs here in Cleveland and in Ohio and in Detroit.
Joe Biden: (26:52)
Folks, I see the federal government harnessing the purchasing power by buying these electric vehicles. Made in America, made in Ohio, made in Detroit, made in America-
Joe Biden: (27:03)
Made in Ohio, made in Detroit, made in America. It’s going to mean one million, according to the experts, one million new good paying auto jobs in the automobile industry alone. Folks, if we don’t act China’s going to own the market. China’s going to own it all. And we will act, in addition to deliver racial justice in America. Folks, protesting is not burning and looting, violence must never be tolerated and it won’t, but these protests are a cry for justice. The names of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Jacob Blake will soon not be forgotten. You know I’ve met with all these families. Well I met with Floyd’s little girl, I think she was six years old. I knelt down to say, or to be at eye level with her. She looked at me and she said, I swear to God, said, “Mr. Vice President, my daddy is going to change in the world. My dad is going to change the world.”
Joe Biden: (28:15)
Folks, I’m not going to forget. You’re not going to forget. This country’s not going to forget. This is going to inspire a new wave of justice in America. But guess what? Because we have the X generation, I mean the Z generation, that in fact is the most open, least prejudice, best educated generation in American history. They’re already moving. They’re already insisting on justice. They know who we are. A new wave of justice America, but also true justice isn’t just about how they deal with police, it’s about jobs. It’s about building wealth. It’s about families. It’s about education. It’s about opportunity. It’s about being able to make a decent living. Nobody should have to work two jobs to stay out of poverty. That’s why, honk if you agree with me that a $15 minimum wage is necessary nationwide. Honk.
Joe Biden: (29:21)
Honk, if you think assistance for a down payment, for a real shot of home ownership should be coming forward with me with $15,000 for first time homeowner, to start a small business, send the child to college debt-free. Folks, Ohio in 2008, 2012, you place your trust in me and Barrack. In 2020, I’m asking you to trust me again. I’m proud of the coalition this campaign is built. To welcome Democrats, Republicans and Independents. I’m running as a proud Democrat, but I’ll govern as an American president. There will be no red States and blue States, just the United States.
Joe Biden: (30:13)
And I promise you I’ll work as hard for those who don’t support me as those who do. That’s the job of a president, to care, to care about everybody, everybody. That’s the duty of a president. And look, you too, have a duty, a duty to vote. Folks, make a plan, go to Iwillvote.com/OH. Folks, the amazing thing about this moment in our history, on the one hand, we’re facing the biggest threat of who we are, what we believe, and what we seen, what we’ve been in our lifetimes. Another hand, our future has never been more promising. I’ve said it many times, the character of America is literally on the ballot.
Joe Biden: (31:09)
The character of our country, but I’m more optimistic about America’s future today than when I was elected to the United States Senate as a 29 year-old kid. Let me tell you why. We are better positioned than any nation in the world to lead the 21st century. Our workers are three times as productive as other workers. We have the biggest economy in the world. We have the strongest military in the history of the world. We have the most innovative entrepreneurs in the world and we are virtually energy independent. We have more great research universities in America than all the rest of the world combined, out of which all these doing inventions have occurred.
Joe Biden: (31:50)
No other nation can match us. We lead by the example of our power, not just by the power of our example. The only thing that can tear America apart is America itself. And that’s exactly what Donald Trump has tried to do from the beginning of his campaign, divide America. The only way he can win, separate us. Pit Americans against one another based on race, gender, ethnicity, national origin. It’s wrong. It’s not who we are, but it’s his only prospect.
Joe Biden: (32:23)
Everybody knows who Donald Trump is. Let’s keep showing them who we are. We choose hope over fear. We choose unity over division. We choose science over fiction and yes, we choose truth over lies. Folks, it’s time to stand up. It’s time to take back our democracy. We can do this. We’re so much better than this. We can be our best, ladies and gentlemen. This is the United States of America. There’s not a damn thing we can’t do, nothing. So let’s get up and do it. God bless you all and may God protect our troops. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.