Trevor Noah started his interview with presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden on Wednesday's Daily Show by asking about systemic racism, a topic Biden had addressed in a USA Today op-ed Wednesday. "It's gonna take time," Biden said. "Donald Trump didn't invent racism, but he sure has promoted it." But what really fueled the civil rights movement in the 1960s was television, he said, and now "not only should cops be wearing a body cam, everybody had a body cam, everybody has a cellphone," and one reason George Floyd's death was so "consequential" and "one of those inflection points" is that we all saw him say his last words and breathe his last breath.
Noah asked if Biden thought police departments could be reformed and if they should be defunded. Biden said he thinks "fundamental changes" can be made "without having to defund police completely," He noted that 90 percent of police budgets come from local governments, and said what the federal government can do is use its leverage to ensure police publicly report all police misconduct, adhere to a prospective "national use of force standard," end jail for drug use and reduce (but not end) their role in addressing homelessness and mental illness.
"I think it's safe to say that America is expecting a really dirty election," Noah said. "We know how Donald Trump plays in an election," and "you know that he will punch below the belt." How will Biden campaign? Biden compared Trump's campaign to a "carny show" and said America won't be fooled twice by Trump's parlor tricks. Trump will play dirty, Biden said. "The good news is that people know me, and they know me warts and all. The bad news is people know me."
When it comes to actual voting, "my single greatest concern: This president is going to try to steal this election," Biden said, pointing to Tuesday's mess in Georgia and Trump's attacks on main-in ballots. "Have you ever considered what would happen if the election result came out as you being the winner and Trump refused to leave?" Noah asked "Yes, I have," Biden said, and given the military blowback Trump is facing now, "I promise you, I'm absolutely convinced they will escort him from the White House with great dispatch."
When it came to the running mate question, Biden had to let Noah down easy. Watch below. Peter Weber