PARKERSBURG, Iowa (AP) — Jill Biden said Tuesday that campaigning on her husband’s behalf has convinced her that most Americans are “disgusted” with President Donald Trump and his effort to enlist Ukrainian help in discrediting her family.
“People know who Donald Trump is,” Jill Biden said in an interview, adding that Trump is offering voters a “distraction” with his accusations that the Bidens engaged in corrupt dealings when son Hunter Biden accepted a lucrative position with a Ukrainian energy firm while his father handled U.S.-Ukraine relations as vice president.
“They know it’s a lie,” Jill Biden told The Associated Press as she finished four days of campaigning with her husband, Joe Biden, and on her own in the first caucus state of Iowa.
“It’s pretty disgusting, as a matter of fact, that our president has invited other countries to get involved in our elections,” Jill Biden said. “People are pretty disgusted by that. They don’t want foreign interference in our elections.”
Of course, that doesn’t mean the 2020 spotlight is easy for Hunter, she acknowledged.
“I see Hunter. I know how he’s doing. I’m his mother,” Jill Biden, 68, said. “There’s nothing better than your mom coming up and giving you a hug and saying, ‘Honey, I love you and it’s going to be OK.’ His name is out there day after day after day, with Trump pounding and pounding and pounding. So, you know, I’m a mom. I’m his mom.”
Hunter Biden, 49, has admitted exercising “poor judgment” when he accepted a position on a foreign energy board in one of the world’s geopolitical hotspots, but he has denied any wrongdoing, and Ukrainian officials have said they found nothing untoward.
However difficult the dynamics are personally, Jill Biden said, she’s convinced they fall squarely in Joe Biden’s political wheelhouse.
“This election is a referendum on character, and I think people know Joe that way … they know what kind of man he is,” she said. “I think they admire Joe, and they want a president they can feel proud of. Joe is that person.”
Separately, she also dismissed concerns about whether her 77-year-old husband is up for the job, and she expressed frustrations over the spotlight on his verbal fumbles, noting that she’d just finished a speech in which she had to correct herself after referring to “the NEA” — the National Education Association — instead of “the NRA,” the National Rifle Association.
“You’re saying your speech over and over again,” she said. “On one of my stops today, a woman was talking about how she can’t afford her insulin, her pump. They’re worried about real problems or how to put food on the table or how to send their kids to college.
“They don’t care whether Joe says one thing and then it’s another thing. … They know it’s a slip of the tongue,” she said. “It’s solutions they want to hear.”