Biden says Trump should 'just be quiet' about coronavirus

Image: Joe Biden  during a campaign stop at Tougaloo College in Tougaloo, M
Joe Biden during a campaign stop at Tougaloo College in Tougaloo, Miss., on March 8, 2020. Copyright Brendan McDermid Reuters
By Adam Edelman with NBC News Politics
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Stocks across the world have cratered amid the spread of the coronavirus.


Former Vice President Joe Biden said Monday that President Donald Trump should "just be quiet" about the coronavirus and suggested the president's use of inaccurate information in discussing the outbreak has caused stocks to plummet.

"I think there's no confidence in the president and anything he says or does," Biden, the front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination,told MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell. "He turns everything into what he thinks is a political benefit for himself and he's actually imploding in the process."

"But there's a lot of innocent bystanders that are being badly hurt," Biden said. "I wish he would just be quiet. I really mean it."

"Just let the experts speak. And acknowledge whatever they suggest to him is what we should be doing," Biden added.

Asked by O'Donnell whether the stock market — which has fallen precipitously over the past week — was plummeting because investors were "realizing the president simply does not tell them … the truth about this situation," Biden answered in the affirmative.

"I believe that's the case. Now it doesn't mean the market wouldn't still go down. But it wouldn't collapse, I don't think," he said.

O'Donnell's complete interview with Biden will air Monday night on "The Last Word."

Stocks tumbled globally on Monday as investors braced for further economic fallout of the coronavirus epidemic, with a new oil price war adding to anxiety.

As of midday Monday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down more than 1,600 points, or 6.4 percent.

As cases of the coronavirus have spread around the world and the U.S., Trumphas refused to back away from spreading personal beliefsabout the virus that contradict veteran health officials and experts.

And even White House officials are growing increasingly frustrated at what they see as Trump's consistent bids to downplay the severity of the outbreak, NBC News reported Sunday — a tendency that has led to a clash in messaging with public health officials.

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