Biden's GOP-Strom Thurmond comparisons anger conservative social media users: 'Always personal attacks'

Biden suggested the former segregationist supporter valued 'basic democratic principles,' unlike the current GOP

Several social media users piled on President Biden’s comments this week attacking the current GOP as worse than Strom Thurmond, the longtime U.S. Senator who supported segregationist policies during his career.

Biden made the remarks at a fundraiser on Wednesday, saying the current GOP is worse than the "real racists" he served alongside in the 1970s.

"I've been a senator since '72. I've served with real racists. I've served with Strom Thurmond. I've served with all these guys that have set terrible records on race," Biden told the crowd at the fundraiser, according to the White House press pool.

The president continued, "But guess what? These guys are worse. These guys do not believe in basic democratic principles."

Biden Thurmond

FILE - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Joseph Biden, D-Del., center, reads from his tally sheet following the committee's voice vote to recommend Robert H. Bork for the Supreme Court, Oct. 6, 1987 in Washington, as Sen. Strom Thurmond, R-S.C., left, and Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass.(AP Photo/John Duricka, File) (AP)


As the comments went viral, several called out Biden for this comparison and his suggestion that Thurmond supported "basic democratic principles" as a segregationist. Thurmond represented South Carolina in the U.S. Senate from 1954 until his death in 2003. He ran for president on a third-party, pro-segregationist platform in 1948.

"Wait, so Biden thinks Strom Thurmond at least supported ‘basic democratic principles’?" Washington Free Beacon reporter Chuck Ross asked.

NewsBusters managing editor Curtis Houck wrote, "These are the kinds of comments from Biden being a blatant DIVIDER in chief that will drive people who are otherwise skittish to vote for Trump. Don't ever let the media or the Democrat Party say Biden speaks for and cares about all Americans."

Conservative author Varad Mehta remarked, "Sure, guys like Storm Thurmond didn’t want Black people to vote. But at least they believed in democracy, unlike these clowns."

"It's always personal attacks. The only ‘substance’ he has are hoaxes. Literally. He ran in 2020 on the Fine People Hoax. He's running in 2024 on the Jan6th Insurrection Hoax. He's basically two hoaxes and insult," "Dilbert" creator Scott Adams noted.

placeholderThe Federalist co-founder Sean Davis commented, "Joe Biden repeatedly praised Strom Thurmond, called him his ‘closest friend,’ urged him to run for president, and eulogized him at his funeral. All of these are recorded on video."

"Just 14 years ago Joe Biden delivered a warm and loving eulogy for a former Ku Klux Klan member," Twitchy’s Doug Powers reminded followers.

Targeted Victory vice president Logan Dobson wrote, "This is the man who told a black audience that Mitt Romney (of all people) would ‘put them back in chains’ so forgive me for not falling for this bit."


Biden speaks at White House about Alexei Navalny

President Joe Biden delivers remarks on the death of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, on Friday, Feb. 16. (AP/Evan Vucci)

Biden's words also sparked backlash from GOP leaders — specifically Speaker of the House Mike Johnson, who called the president "desperate" and "underwater in the polls."

"Outrageous," Johnson said on social media in reaction to the president's remarks. "The least popular President to seek re-election is now so desperate and so underwater in the polls he’s playing the race card from the bottom of the deck."

In 2003, Biden gave a eulogy for Thurmond after his death. During his speech, he called Thurmond a "brave man, who in the end made his choice and moved to the good side" and said they became "good friends."

"I went to the Senate emboldened, angered and outraged at age 29 about the treatment of African-Americans in this country, about everything for a period in his life Strom represented. But then I met the man," Biden said at the time.

Biden yelling

Biden accused the GOP of being worse than the late Sen. Strom Thurmond, who supported segregation. (Sarah Silbiger)

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