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President Joe Biden discussed coronavirus stimulus checks and President Trump’s impeachment trial in a preview clip from his first television network interview since taking office. The interview with CBS Evening News anchor and managing editor Norah O’Donnell will air ahead of the Super Bowl on Sunday.
The new president said he would not compromise on offering a fresh $1,400 stimulus check as part of the new coronavirus relief package, and he is “prepared to negotiate” on who would receive this third round of pandemic financial aid. The direct payments are part of Biden’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief plan currently being considered by Congress.
“Here’s the deal. Middle-class folks need help. But you don’t need to get any help to someone making $300,000 bucks or $250,000. So it’s somewhere between an individual making up to $75,000 and phasing out, and a couple making up to $150,000 and then phasing out,” Biden told O’Donnell.
Biden also touched on the ongoing struggle to include a $15 minimum wage in his American Rescue Plan. “I am prepared, as president of the United States, on a separate negotiation on minimum wage,” he said. “No one should work 40 hours a week and live below the poverty wage. And if you’re making less than $15 an hour, you’re living below the poverty wage.”
O’Donnell also approached the subject of the former president and his impeachment trial, asking Biden if he were still a senator if he’d convict Donald Trump.
“I ran like hell to defeat him because I thought he was unfit to be president. I’ve watched what everybody else watched, what happened when that crew invaded the United States Congress. But I’m not in the Senate now. I’ll let the Senate make that decision,” Biden stated.
He added that Trump should stop receiving intelligence briefings “because of his erratic behavior unrelated to the insurrection.” Past former presidents have continued to receive routine intelligence briefings as a courtesy. Biden’s point of view is mirrored by Sue Gordon, the former principal deputy director of national intelligence, who recently wrote in The Washington Post that Trump shouldn’t receive briefings following Biden’s inauguration.
When asked what his “worst fear” would be were Trump to continue to have access to such information, Biden opted not to speculate “out loud.” Instead, he questioned “what value is [there in] giving him an intelligence briefing? What impact does he have at all, other than the fact he might slip and say something?”
The full interview is set to air during the 4 p.m. ET hour on CBS as part of the network’s pregame coverage for Super Bowl LV. One more preview of the interview will run on CBS’ Sunday morning public affairs show Face the Nation.
With the CBS interview, Biden is continuing a tradition started by President Obama, who granted an interview to the network that broadcasts the big game in an effort to get in front of millions of Americans who may not watch TV news programs regularly.
President Trump gave a few Super Bowl interviews — to CBS in 2019, and to Fox in 2017 and 2020. However, he skipped 2018 when NBC, his former network from his Apprentice days, was the broadcaster.
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