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Saturday, July 4, 2020

Biden focuses on racial justice in July 4 message

Joe Biden is centering racial justice in his Fourth of July message, deepening the contrast with President Donald Trump.

“We have a chance to rip the roots of systemic racism out of this country,” Biden says in the Independence Day video shared with POLITICO, which features images of protests though the years and includes references to Bull Connor, Martin Luther King, George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement. “We have a chance to live up to the words that founded this nation.”

While Biden does not mention Trump, his focus on marginalized and oppressed communities extends the strikingly different tones on race from both men since the death of Floyd in police custody sparked global outrage and galvanized a moment.

It also marks another holiday where their disparate approaches were laid bare: In May, when they honored Memorial Day, Biden wore a mask and Trump didn’t.

Trump, in a late Friday speech at Mount Rushmore, denounced cancel culture and the “angry mobs” that have taken to the streets to protest police violence and racism.

The president spoke of preserving American culture and traditions against “a merciless campaign to wipe out our history, defame our heroes, erase our values and indoctrinate our children.”

On Saturday, Trump hosts a salute to America event in Washington while Biden will appear later Saturday at the Essence Festival of Culture to answer questions from black women. The segment was taped earlier this week and airs online.

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