PHILADELPHIA (CNN) — Vice President Joe Biden offered powerful criticism of Donald Trump Wednesday, painting the Republican nominee as completely unqualified for the presidency.
“He is trying to tell us he cares about the middle class. Give me a break. That’s a bunch of malarky,” Biden said. “This guy doesn’t have a clue about the Middle Class. Not a clue.”
The crowd roared with approval, chanting “not a clue.”
Biden slammed Trump as unable to handle the complexities of a dangerous world.
“No major party nominee in the history of this nation has ever known less or has been less prepared to deal with our national security,” he said.
Biden used his address on the third night of the Democratic National Convention to appeal to middle-class voters and convince them Hillary Clinton understands their concerns. Leveraging his blue-collar bona fides, Biden argued Clinton is intimately familiar with the economic disenfranchisement that helped power Trump’s rise.
“Everybody knows she is smart,” Biden said. “Everybody knows she is tough. But I know what she is passionate about. I know Hillary. Hillary understands. Hillary gets it.”
Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, meanwhile, said he was not a Democrat or a Republican but appeared at the convention to demolish his fellow billionaire’s reputation in business.
“I believe we need a president who is a problem-solver, not a bomb-thrower,” said Bloomberg.
He quipped that unlike Trump, he didn’t start his business empire with a “million dollar check from my father.”
“Trump has left behind a well-documented record of bankruptcies, thousands of lawsuits, angry shareholders and contractors who feel cheated, and disillusioned customers who feel ripped off,” Bloomberg said. “Trump says he wants to run the nation like he’s run his business. God help us!”
“I am a New Yorker, and I know a con when I see one.”
He went on: “The bottom line is: Trump is a risky, reckless, and radical choice. And we can’t afford to make that choice!”
President Barack Obama will speak later in the evening, reinforcing the message that no one has ever been more qualified to be in the Oval Office than Clinton, placing his legacy in the hands of his one-time bitter rival. Obama’s keynote speech could be the final chance of his presidency to address a crowd of millions of people before a prime-time television audience.
The third night of the DNC will also offer a big opportunity for Tim Kaine, Clinton’s vice presidential pick, who will introduce himself to an audience unfamiliar with his years as a governor and senator in Virginia.
The night’s underlying theme is security — national security, economic security and safety from gun crime.
Leon Panetta, the former CIA director and secretary of defense, said that Clinton is uniquely qualified to be President and lashed out at Trump over his apparent call on Russian intelligence agencies to help find emails that Hillary Clinton deleted from her private server.
“Today, Donald Trump today once again took Russia’s side. He asked the Russians to interfere in American politics. Think about that for a moment. Donald Trump, who wants to be president of the United States, is asking one of our adversaries to engage in hacking or intelligence efforts against the United States of America to affect an election,” Panetta said.
“As someone who was responsible for protecting our nation from cyberattacks, it’s inconceivable to me that any presidential candidate would be that irresponsible.
“Donald Trump cannot become our Commander-in-Chief.”
During his remarks, some Bernie Sanders supporters began to chant “No More War!” but were drowned out by counter chants of “USA, USA.”
Obama’s address represents a bookend for a career that exploded into public consciousness from the stage of Democratic convention 12 years ago to the day with a celebrated address in Boston. He will use his slot to appeal to Americans to elect Clinton, who would prolong Democratic control of the White House to at least 12 years if she wins in November.
“Nothing truly prepares you for the demands of the Oval Office,” Obama will tell convention delegates, according to excerpts of his remarks released by the White House. “Until you’ve sat at that desk, you don’t know what it’s like to manage a global crisis or send young people to war.”
“But Hillary’s been in the room,” Obama will continue. “She’s been part of those decisions. She knows what’s at stake in the decisions our government makes for the working family, the senior citizen, the small business owner, the soldier, and the veteran.”
“I can say with confidence there has never been a man or a woman more qualified than Hillary Clinton to serve as President of the United States of America,” Obama will say.
The President will acknowledge the “real anxieties” many people have about paying the bills, protecting their kids and terror attacks in places like Orlando and Nice. But he is also expected to paint a vision of America that is far more optimistic and filled with vitality than the picture a nation under siege from crime and terrorism laid out by Trump during his convention last week.
“The America I know is full of courage, and optimism, and ingenuity. The America I know is decent and generous,” Obama will say, according to the excerpts