Joe Biden told MSNBC on Thursday that President Trump is "rooting for more violence, not less" in cities facing unrest due to protests against police brutality.

The backdrop: The Democratic nominee's comments came after four consecutive nights of turmoil in Kenosha, Wisconsin, following the police shooting of Jacob Blake, a 29-year-old Black man who was left paralyzed.

  • On Wednesday, a 17-year-old, who allegedly was acting as a member of a vigilante group, was charged with first-degree intentional homicide in Tuesday night's shooting deaths of two people during the protests in Kenosha.
  • The unrest there follows months of protests nationwide, sparked by the police killings of George Floyd in Minneapolis and Breonna Taylor in Louisville.

What he's saying: "What’s he doing — pouring more gasoline on the fire — I think he views it as a political benefit," Biden said of Trump.

  • Biden pointed to comments made by White House counselor Kellyanne Conway, who told Fox News that "the more chaos and anarchy and vandalism and violence reigns, the better it is for the very clear choice on who's best on public safety and law and order."
  • Biden also said he would consider visiting Kenosha: "What I don’t want to do is become part of the problem. ... If I were president, I would be going. If I went, I would be trying to pull together the Black community as well as the white community."

Worth noting: He also shot down House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's suggestion that he should refuse to debate Trump.

  • "As long as the commission continues down the straight and narrow. I am going to debate him. ... I am going to be a fact-checker on the floor."

Go deeper

Commission releases topics for first presidential debate

Moderator Chris Wallace. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Fox News anchor Chris Wallace has selected what topics he'll cover while moderating the first presidential debate between President Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden next week.

What to watch: Topics for the Sept. 29 debate will include Trump and Biden's records, the Supreme Court, COVID-19, economic policy, racism and the integrity of the election, the Commission for Presidential Debates announced on Tuesday. Each topic will receive 15 minutes of conversation and will be presented in no particular order.

Updated 10 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 a.m. ET: 31,647,930 — Total deaths: 971,711 Total recoveries: 21,776,599Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 a.m. ET: 6,897,661 — Total deaths: 200,818 — Total recoveries: 2,646,959 — Total tests: 96,612,436Map.
  3. Health: Hospitals want more time to repay pandemic loans — Supply shortages continue to plague testing.
  4. Business: The high-wage jobs aren't coming back
  5. Vaccines: Johnson & Johnson begins large phase 3 trial — The FDA plans to toughen standards.
  6. Sports: Less travel is causing the NBA to see better basketball.
Kendall Baker, author of Sports
54 mins ago - Sports

Less travel is causing the NBA to see better basketball

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

In addition to keeping out the coronavirus, the NBA bubble has also delivered a stellar on-court product, with crisp, entertaining play night in and night out.

Why it matters: General managers, athletic trainers and league officials believe the lack of travel is a driving force behind the high quality of play — an observation that could lead to scheduling changes for next season and beyond.

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