Joe Biden is expected later today to denounce President Trump’s leadership on U.S. foreign policy and make the case that the president has devastated America’s credibility on the world stage.
In an expansive foreign policy speech in New York City this afternoon, Biden will also announce that if elected president, he will convene a summit of the world’s democracies in his first year in office “to try to refocus on our common purpose,” according to a senior Biden campaign official.
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Aside from inviting other world leaders, Biden would invite members of the private sector, including tech and social media companies, to take part in the summit and make commitments “to make our democracy more resilient.”
“That would be a very big moment in a Biden presidency,” the official said.
Biden will both take on Trump and lay out three pillars of his own foreign policy vision.
“At the very moment democracies around the world are looking to the United States to be truly the leader of the free world, President Trump, by embracing autocrats and dismissing Democrats, seems to be playing to the other team,” a senior Biden campaign official said in describing the direction of Biden’s upcoming remarks. “The president’s assaults on our own democracy, its institutions, its underlying values, has deeply tarnished our ability to lead by the power of our example and to bring others along. ”
The focus on foreign policy — long considered an area of strength for the former vice president — comes at a moment when Biden is working to regain momentum as a front-runner. Biden’s polling numbers have slid in some national polls in wake of his first debate performance, in which his record on race was challenged in a tense exchange with Sen. Kamala Harris.
Last week, in Sumter, South Carolina, Biden delivered a lengthy address laying out his work on civil rights and apologized for making remarks about the “civility” of working with segregationist senators.
The return to his area of expertise on Thursday allows Biden to shift the focus of his campaign to a comfortable place and enables him to frame the contest as one between himself and Trump.
Part of Biden’s remarks will focus on “a foreign policy for the middle class.”
“That means everything from refocusing on truly sharpening our innovative edge to truly bolstering the middle class,” the official said. As for China policy, Biden is expected to argue that the United States is more effective working with allies than operating alone.
“We’re about a quarter of the world’s GDP. With our democratic partners, we’re half of the world’s GDP,” the official continued. “That’s something that China cannot ignore in addressing the concerns that all of us have about its actions.”