MILWAUKEE — President Biden used a Labor Day campaign speech to hurl continued vitriol at former President Donald Trump and his supporters, telling rallygoers in Wisconsin on Monday that “MAGA Republicans” post a threat to their personal and financial freedoms.
In a part victory-lap and part campaign-rally speech for Democratic candidates, Mr. Biden doubled down on his claim that the Trump-wing of the party supports “semi-fascism” and is unrelated to traditional conservatives with whom he served in Congress.
“Not every Republican is a MAGA Republican. Not every Republican embraces that extreme ideology. I know because I’ve been able to work with mainstream Republicans my whole career,” he said. “But the extreme MAGA Republicans in Congress have chosen to go backwards full of anger, violence, hate and division. But together we can, and we must choose a different path: Forward.”
Mr. Biden continued: “Extreme MAGA Republicans don’t just threaten our personal rights and our economic security. They embrace political violence.”
Those remarks prompted widespread condemnation from the GOP as both groundless and as sowing the very division Mr. Biden claims to decry.
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Speaking in Milwaukee, Mr. Biden also repeatedly took aim at Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, an ardent Republican backer of Mr. Trump.
The Wisconsin Republican is facing a difficult reelection battle against Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes, a Democrat.
The race, considered a toss-up by nonpartisan election forecasters, is crucial for Republicans to win if they are to retake control of the evenly split chamber.
“To this day, MAGA Republicans in Congress defend the mob that stormed the Capitol. And people died. Sen. Johnson said it was by and large a peaceful protest,” Mr. Biden said. “There’s no democracy where you can be pro-insurrection and pro-democracy.”
“So when I say that democracy is at stake, I mean what I’m saying. Literally. You can’t say support law enforcement and call the people who attack the police on Jan. 6 ‘patriots,’” he said.
The president also used the opportunity to tout several recent legislative victories, some of which Republicans opposed.
He also slammed a plan put forward earlier this year by the GOP lawmaker who leads the Senate Republicans’ election efforts — Sen. Rick Scott of Florida — as a threat to Social Security because it would require the program to be reauthorized by Congress every five years.
“The biggest contrast from what MAGA Republicans — the extreme right, the Trumpies — these MAGA Republicans in Congress are coming for your Social Security,” Mr. Biden said. “You might think I’m making this stuff up, it’s so outrageous.”