Biden Says He's Isn't Going Anywhere | Crooked Media
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July 08, 2024
What A Day
Biden Says He's Isn't Going Anywhere

In This Episode

  • President Biden continued to aggressively push back on the idea that he would drop out of the presidential race. He started Monday morning by sending a letter to all Congressional Democrats that said he is “firmly committed to staying in this race,” and that it was time for speculation about it to end. He followed that up by calling into MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” where he blamed the party’s “elites” for trying to push him out of the race. Tara Palmeri, senior political correspondent for Puck News and the host of the election podcast “Somebody’s Gotta Win,” breaks down the mood on Capitol Hill as lawmakers returned from the long holiday weekend.
  • The Paris Olympics are just a couple of weeks away. One of the people competing for Team U.S.A. is runner Nikki Hiltz, who is trans and nonbinary. Hiltz will be one of a few openly trans people at the games during a socio-political moment where trans people — trans women especially — are banned from participating on sports teams that align with their identities. CeCé Telfer, the first openly transgender person to win an NCAA track and field title, has also been trying to get to the Olympics but is barred from doing so. She shares her story.
  • And in headlines: Republicans proposed a party platform with a softer abortion stance ahead of next week’s Republican National Convention, Hurricane Beryl led to at least three deaths in Texas, and Boeing agreed to plead guilty to conspiring to defraud the federal government.


Show Notes:



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Tre’vell Anderson: It’s Tuesday, July 9th. I’m Tre’vell Anderson. 


Priyanka Aribindi: And I’m Priyanka Aribindi and this is What a Day, the podcast that’s always six degrees from fame and fortune. 


Tre’vell Anderson: Kevin Bacon recently told Vanity Fair that he went in public disguised as a normie. He said he hated not being treated special. Insane.


Priyanka Aribindi: The part I don’t understand is our six degrees here. Are you saying that we’re connected because we’re normies? Because honestly, I find that offensive. [laughter] [music break]


Tre’vell Anderson: On today’s show, Republicans introduce their party platform, and they say that they’re going to be less terrible on abortion, but we really know they’ll still be terrible. Plus, with the Olympics just a few weeks away, we hear from an athlete fighting for greater trans inclusion in sports. 


Priyanka Aribindi: But first, President Biden continues to aggressively push back on the idea that he would step aside from this presidential race. He started Monday morning by sending a letter to all of the congressional Democrats saying that despite the speculation, he is, quote, “firmly committed to staying in this race and beating Donald Trump.” To that end, he once again asserted that he believes he’s the best person to beat Trump. He also called in to MSNBC’s Morning Joe, striking a defiant and decidedly populist tone. Take a listen to this clip. 


[clip of President Joe Biden] I’m getting so frustrated, but by the elites now I’m not talking about you guys, but by the elites in the party who they know so much more. Well if any of these guys– 


[clip of Morning Joe host] Yeah. 


[clip of President Joe Biden] –don’t think I should run, run against me. Go ahead. Announce. Announce for president. Challenge me at the convention. 


Priyanka Aribindi: I do think the Morning Joe hosts count as elites personally, but maybe that is just me. And later, in a call with hundreds of top Democratic donors and bundlers, Biden said that he is done talking about the debate. And he implored Democrats to move forward, ignore the distractions and turn the focus back to Donald Trump. 


Tre’vell Anderson: Listen, Biden said he’s not going anywhere. You heard what he said, Priyanka. [laugh]


Priyanka Aribindi: Yes, he very much does not want to go anywhere. That is very, very clear. And this is just the start of a very busy week for Biden. Starting today, he is hosting the 75th NATO summit in Washington, DC, which we’ll talk a little bit more about in headlines. And he is now scheduled to have a solo news conference on Thursday at the end of that summit. That’s something that has been typical in the past for past presidents, but not for Biden. It will certainly be very closely watched. And another thing that was closely watched yesterday, it was reported that a neurologist who specializes in Parkinson’s disease visited the White House eight times between last summer and this spring. Press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre originally refused to offer any detail about the visits, including who that doctor was seeing and why. But late yesterday the president’s physician, Doctor Kevin O’Connor, said in a memo that the neurologist was part of the team that examined the president during his annual physical. Doctor O’Connor reaffirmed that according to that last physical, the president is doing fine. And he added that Biden has not seen a neurologist outside of that time. He didn’t specifically address why that doctor was there several more times in recent months, though he did say that that doctor regularly held clinics there in the past. Obviously a lot going on with all of this. To dig into all of it I spoke earlier with Tara Palmeri. She is a senior political correspondent for Puck News and the host of the election podcast “Somebody’s Gotta Win” I started by asking her how lawmakers felt about Biden’s letter. 


Tara Palmeri: Well, publicly, there are only a handful of lawmakers that have come out and said that he should not be at the top of the ticket, he should not run for reelection. And that’s really not enough to make any sort of movement, right? Right now, it would be leadership in the party that could activate any sort of pressure on Joe Biden, even though and I’m talking about Chuck Schumer, Hakeem Jeffries, um Nancy Pelosi, who’s sort of like honorary leader. And they’re not doing anything. They’re saying publicly that they’re behind Biden. And I know from my sources that privately they’re not applying pressure to him either. And I’ve just heard a lot of resignation, that this is just the way it is. We can’t get him to step down. He’s got to make the decision himself. But I have to think that if there was a large number like 100 or so members of Congress, not just ten or so speaking out, it would be a totally different story. But right now, you’ve got, you know, leadership in the Congressional Black Caucus saying that we’re standing behind him. You’ve got John Fetterman, a senator from Pennsylvania, a huge state. I mean, if you win Pennsylvania, it means you’re probably going to win Michigan and it means you’re probably going to win the election. That’s the blue wall. And he’s saying, let’s stick with Joe Biden. So you’ve got some really powerful forces and some loud voices on the hill saying, we got to stand by our man. But I’ve got to tell you, my phone has been blowing up since that debate from senior Democrats, nervous. 


Priyanka Aribindi: You’re hinting at this, but what’s the mood in general been like, especially since Congress returned yesterday? Among not only leadership, but just rank and file Democrats as well?


Tara Palmeri: They feel like they’re on the Titanic some of them. Like they just feel like they’re going to go down. Some of them won’t stay in office because he’s at the top of the ticket, right? Others are in safer districts, and they’ll hang on and they’ll be in the minority. And it’s not fun to be in the minority, especially if you’ve got Donald Trump in the president. You know, with the House and Senate, he’s got full control. It’s just not fun for them. And Democrats have already been in the minority for the past two years in the House, with a very slim majority in the Senate. So there’s just a feeling that their leader is not in a strong position. They see the polls. They don’t think that he can win. And uh–


Priyanka Aribindi: Are they treating it like a foregone conclusion at this point? 


Tara Palmeri: In a lot of ways, yes. Because they don’t think that there’s any way to apply pressure to Joe Biden, that it’s just he just keeps withstanding it. Now he has a very big week ahead of him. He has that NATO conference in Washington, D.C., he’s going to have a big press conference during that event, and he’s going to have to take questions from the press. And if he’s able to present a stronger performance to the American people, maybe it will quiet things down for a while. But if he messes up names of world leaders, it could just reignite the fire again. 


Priyanka Aribindi: Biden also called in to MSNBC’s Morning Joe on Monday. He struck a really populist tone. He claimed that it’s the elites in the media who are trying to push him to get out of this race, and that the average voter is still behind him. But does polling actually back that up at this point? 


Tara Palmeri: No, that’s the thing. The polling does not back that up. And I’ve been saying this for a long time, but Biden and Trump have been neck and neck this whole time, right, for almost a year or more. And Biden was always ahead of Trump in 2020 by a sizable amount. Four points was maybe his lowest in some polls, but he was always ahead. He’s been behind Trump in national polls. Trump has historically under polled. So Trump could be doing even better than what the polls are showing. And in the end, in 2020, even though it showed that Biden would beat Trump by four to five to ten points, it was a much closer race than anyone expected. 


Priyanka Aribindi: Biden obviously wants to put this debate about him staying in the race to bed. It’s clearly not over, though. What are you watching for that could shift how either Biden or other lawmakers act here? In addition to, you know, how he performs in unscripted events. 


Tara Palmeri: We’re going to be looking for leaks that come out of the White House that tell us more about the president, his health, his day to day life. Then again, next week is the Republican National Convention. All eyes will be on Donald Trump. He has been out of the spotlight for the past ten days. It’s revolutionary, frankly. But he’s obviously realized that making this a referendum on Biden is a better position for him than making it a referendum on himself. But next week will be all about him. He’ll be choosing his vice president. We’ll see how that goes over. We’ll see how the RNC flows. He has his own ability to self-sabotage as well. He’s only a few years behind Biden, let’s not forget that. 


Priyanka Aribindi: That was my conversation with Tara Palmeri. She is a senior political correspondent for Puck News and the host of the election podcast, “Somebody’s Gotta Win.” 


Tre’vell Anderson: Thanks for that, Priyanka. In other news, the Paris Olympics are just a couple of weeks away. Many of us have been watching the trials and celebrating all those who will get a chance to compete on team USA. One of the folks who will be there after qualifying last week is runner Nikki Hiltz, who is trans and non-binary. Their participation is particularly of note because they will be one of few openly trans people at the games. And during a socio political moment where trans people, trans women especially, are being banned from sports team participation that aligns with their identities. 


Priyanka Aribindi: Yes. What an interesting moment to be a trans athlete on this Olympic stage. Also, I keep forgetting just in the midst of everything going on. The Olympics are really so soon. They’re really right around the corner. As we’ve covered on this show in the U.S, Republicans especially are pushing anti-trans policies in state legislatures that include sports bans that specifically target trans girls and women. We’ve also talked about the conservative backed lawsuit against the NCAA and its policy that allowed trans swimmer Lia Thomas to compete for and win a women’s championship title in 2022. There is a long recent history of this. 


Tre’vell Anderson: Yeah, and so it’s a big deal that Nikki will be able to represent trans and non-binary communities in this way and on team USA nonetheless. But I want to introduce y’all to another trans person who’s been trying to get to the Olympics for a few years, but she’s barred from doing so based on the inconsistent policies of track and field’s governing body. Her name is CeCé Telfer, and in 2019, she became the first openly transgender person to win an NCAA title while she was a student at New Hampshire’s Franklin Pierce University. Her hurdling win set off a firestorm of transphobic attacks, an experience she details in her new book titled, Make It Count: My Fight to Become the First Transgender Olympic Runner. I wanted to chat with CeCé as an athlete navigating this moment, and I started by asking her about making history back in 2019. 


CeCé Telfer: I mean, 2019 was definitely a breakthrough and a milestone for me, but it also was it triggered this big conversation around women’s sports and if transgender women belong in sports. I didn’t realize that I was going to be the pioneer of that conversation, and just me living authentically in my truth and in who I am was going to trigger all of this backlash and all of this war between women and society and even between women together, you know what I mean? 


Tre’vell Anderson: Mm hmm. 


CeCé Telfer: But in the moment, I felt like God answered my prayers. My whole life as a child, I always saw myself as a woman, and I always thought I was going to be an Olympian. And 2019 was definitely like a validation of that in like, you have what it takes to get to the Olympics. 


Tre’vell Anderson: Yeah. And we recently found out that this year in Paris, there will be a trans runner headed to the Olympics. Trans and non-binary runner Nikki Hiltz will travel to Paris to compete in women’s track and field for team USA. What was your reaction to hearing that news, especially as someone you know, is was an Olympic hopeful but can’t? 


CeCé Telfer: I’m ecstatic for Nikki. I just saw the news. Good for them. But at the end of the day, I was barred from competing as a transgender woman. Nikki is a transgender, non-binary individual, so it just shows that the rules is not fair and equal. I got barred for no reason. I got barred for being who I am, which just shows that it’s not about the signs and the facts of sports. If it was about all women and all bodies, then I would be competing in the Olympic trials with a fair shot like everybody else. And to that I say good for Nikki for smashing it and taking it and taking it all the way to the top. 


Tre’vell Anderson: I want to ask you about your book. It’s titled Make It Count: My Fight to become the first transgender Olympic Runner. It’s all about your experience, right, as a trans athlete, but it’s also about your willingness right to keep going in the face of so much hatred and foolishness that you’ve had to deal with. And something that we often talk about in community, right, is how visibility is a paradox. I’m wondering when you were in the process of writing this book, who were you writing it for? What did you want them to take away from it? 


CeCé Telfer: When I was writing this book, I definitely had in mind the generation to come. I was definitely speaking to the little ones, the little trans kids. Also, I realized that I was talking and speaking to Little CeCé because she didn’t see somebody like her on the athletic stage. Yes, there are Black women that dominate sports like sports is for Black people. Period. However, I feel as though that there was nobody that really, truly represented who I am to the fullest truth and authenticity. And I really believe that everyone deserves to see a physical manifestation of their dream in order to achieve them. 


Tre’vell Anderson: So you were just speaking a little bit about little CeCé and what we know, right, is that like this debate over trans women in sports is also taking place in schools, right, with young people. Several states have passed laws banning trans girls, in particular, from playing team sports for fun. In an interview with The New York Times in 2021, you said that you began running track in elementary school in Jamaica, where sports are not divided by gender. I kind of want to hear you talk a little bit about what you think about the young trans girls in particular, right, who are being forced to sit on the bench because of so many of these policies. 


CeCé Telfer: I think it’s outrageous that the people who benefit from the lifesaving aspect that sports has to provide are the ones being barred from having access to it. Sports has saved my life so many times, and it’s also helping transgender kids process and handle what they’re going through at home. We know it’s hard and it’s not easy. Sports is a good outlet to channel all of these things, right? All of what we’re feeling very normal human being emotions. And now that we can’t have access to the basic right of practicing sports is outrageous. Like sports just gives us that belongingness that we’re looking for. Because I know that for a fact. My book talks about it too like, every single day I’m being bullied. When I’m an athlete, trust me, the bullying doesn’t stop. However, when you’re a good athlete, your teammates have to fight for you. They have to defend you because they want you to win. They want you to make the team look good. You are a representation of them. So if you’re doing the team a favor of being great and like killing it and getting them team points, they’re going to defend you. You gain so much respect as being just an athlete, and I feel like everybody should have fair access to that. 


Tre’vell Anderson: Absolutely. I wonder what advice do you have for school leaders, for coaches, specifically when it comes to supporting any trans youth that might be either in their school or on their sports teams? What would you tell those adults, right, about how to support those children? 


CeCé Telfer: I would tell these adults, if they don’t know how to support trans and non-binary kids. The number one thing is to lead with love and understanding. When you lead with love and understanding, you are able to accommodate other people because you’re able to listen to their needs and their wants. Another part that is missing is that these coaches, athletic directors, and people at a high level of organization that are looking to have a more inclusive environment and space for transgender and non-binary people, especially transgender women. We have to have bodies on committees that are making decisions in our lives that look like us and that represent us. Also when it comes to college and high schools and any source of education on campuses, I believe, and I feel like it’s very necessary and it’s very important to implement sensitivity training right at the beginning, like orientation, how we talk about everything else, what is allowed and what is not allowed on campus. Implementing that in orientation will nip it right in the bud. Discrimination, not allowed. Trans people exist. Non-binary people exist. Implementing protocols. Coaches and athletic directors can implement protocols that help students and athletes like us. And these are the tools and steps that we can take in order to have a more inclusive environment and in order to embrace all these different bodies and different kids and people. 


Tre’vell Anderson: Mm hmm. Absolutely. Now, one of, if not the most common arguments against allowing trans women in particular to compete in sports is that trans women have some sort of unfair advantage against cis women, but there’s not a lot of science right to back up that claim. 


CeCé Telfer: Mm hmm. 


Tre’vell Anderson: But really, I want to hear you talk to those people who say that athletes like yourself have it easy. What do you say in response to those people? 


CeCé Telfer: People who think that we have an advantage or we have it easy is completely fallace and folly and it’s not true. We are immediately faced with threats. We have to worry about going to competitions, and the fact that we might not leave that competition alive today. We might not cross that finish line alive. I don’t know if any other athletes have these things in the back of their heads when they’re training, when they’re competing, but this is the first thing at the forefront of my brain everywhere I go, because it’s very real. It’s very real that a parent can snap and take my life because they feel as though that I’m taking something away from their child, and people are saying that I have an advantage. I can’t wake up as a transgender woman and say, I’m going to play sports. I’m going to play elite sports. No, I have to wait a whole year of going under a certain protocol and expectations and rules. My organization does not give a fuck about me. They only care about the results that I have to produce that follows the guidelines. And even if I am following the guidelines, they still have the ability to tell me no. The science and facts shows that transgender women have no advantages and we do not have it easy. If anything, we have it hard because the medications and rules that we have to follow is making our bones more brittle and more prone to osteoporosis. We’re at risk for medical implications every single day. Blood clots, heart attack can happen at any time. These are things that we sign over. We can’t get better. We can’t get faster. We don’t even have coaches, facilities, or organizations that support us. So how is that an advantage if we’re struggling constantly, we don’t have money or resources or tools to do what we love, and we’re still posing a threat? The only people that have advantages right now are the people who are allowed to compete and play without any medical implications of their body. They don’t have to worry about showing up and not leaving that track alive. All they have to worry about is executing. 


Tre’vell Anderson: Yeah, it’s a mess. We started this conversation talking about your goal to get to the Olympics. So I want to end our conversation there. 


CeCé Telfer: Absolutely. 


Tre’vell Anderson: What is next for your journey in getting to the Olympic stage? 


CeCé Telfer: My goal next in getting to the Olympic stage 2028 Los Angeles is honestly just trying to stay safe, sane, healthy and rise to the occasion in a healthy and positive way and look forward to the indoor season next year because nobody’s going to ever stop me from competing but myself. I’m always going to show up. I’m always going to compete. You’re not going to stop me from running. I’m going to look forward to 2028 because I am capable and I’m worthy, and I’m going to compete next season. And, you know, just keep fighting the good fight and hoping that the next four years to come that this decision will somehow miraculously reverse with me just being present and people, other athletes showing up for me, showing up for women. I’m excited for what my book brings to the table. I’m excited for other athletes to read my book. I’m excited for people to see that like, not all trans people are the same and their the stories are different and see what we really go through. Unfiltered, raw and very necessary. I’m just excited to live, and I’m excited to be happy because nobody is going to break my soul and you can’t take my happiness. I’m excited for all of that. 


Tre’vell Anderson: That was my conversation with CeCé Telfer, author of Make It Count: My Fight to become the first transgender Olympic Runner. And you can catch the Olympics July 26th through August 11th on NBC. 


Priyanka Aribindi: That is the latest for now. We’ll get to some headlines in just a moment, but if you like our show, make sure to subscribe. Share it with your friends. We’ll be right back after some ads. [music break]




Priyanka Aribindi: Now let’s wrap up with some headlines. 


[sung] Headlines. 


Priyanka Aribindi: The Republican National Committee released its 2024 policy platform on Monday. Dedicated to the, quote, “forgotten men and women of America.” Wonder what in the world they could possibly mean by that? The committee has leaned heavily into Trump’s America First agenda, and the text of the 16 page document reads like a Truth Social post, random capitalizations and all. The platform listed 20 promises that Republicans said that they’ll stand by, including stop the migrant invasion and keep men out of women’s sports. Okay, their plan hits here. But abortion, notably, is not a huge talking point in this doc. It is buried back on page 15. It states that Republicans, quote, “will oppose late term abortion while supporting mothers and policies that advance prenatal care, access to birth control and IVF.” I’ll believe it when I see it, but I don’t want to see it. I don’t want to live to see this. 


Tre’vell Anderson: Right. [laugh]


Priyanka Aribindi: Please, no. This is a notable shift from the GOP’s earlier stances that they would back a 20 week federal abortion ban. RNC members will vote on whether to confirm the platform at next week’s Republican National Convention in Milwaukee. Also, supposedly, Amber Rose will be there. Amber Rose, Kanye West’s ex. Random. Random. Random. But if that is the type of talent that the RNC is pulling in, the good people of Milwaukee, you did nothing to deserve this. 


Tre’vell Anderson: They got to get them Black votes however they can. Okay? 


Priyanka Aribindi: Amber Rose? 


Tre’vell Anderson: [laugh] The first major Atlantic storm of the season, Beryl made landfall in Texas on Monday as a category one hurricane. It killed at least three people in the Houston area and left nearly two million customers without power statewide, the National Hurricane Center said winds reached up to 80mph. According to state officials, several transmission lines were knocked out during the storm, and it could take days for electrical workers to restore power. Beryl started as a category five hurricane in the Caribbean last week. Forecasters said that Beryl will likely be downgraded to a post tropical cyclone today. 


Priyanka Aribindi: As we mentioned earlier, world leaders gather in DC this week for the NATO summit and a celebration of the alliance’s 75th anniversary. President Biden welcomes leaders to the three day meeting later today, all while he faces rising scrutiny here at home over his ability to lead. The US is NATO’s most powerful member, so there is an air of uncertainty since members are worried about another Trump presidency. That is because Trump has been very critical of NATO in recent years. It would be a disaster for that and for so many other reasons if he were to be elected. A big focus at this week’s summit is obviously the war in Ukraine, which has strengthened the alliance in size and immunity. Leaders are planning to back a new proposal that helps get equipment and training to Ukrainian armed forces. Still, tensions are a bit high. Ukraine is not actually a member of NATO, something that the country’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky has pushed for as he fights Russia. 


Tre’vell Anderson: Boeing agreed to plead guilty to conspiring to defraud the federal government on Sunday. This was over two fatal crashes involving its airplanes. A Boeing 737 Max crashed in Indonesia in 2018, and another crashed in Ethiopia the following year. The disasters killed more than 340 people in total. Boeing promised the Justice Department in 2021 that it would improve the safety of its planes. In exchange, the DOJ never prosecuted the plane company, but the department went back on the deal after a cabin panel flew off a Boeing plane earlier this year on an Alaska Airlines flight. Boeing’s new agreement with the DOJ requires the company to pay a fine of more than $487 million and invest at least $455 million more towards making its planes safer. The agreement also requires Boeing officials to meet with the families of the victims of both plane crashes personally. 


Priyanka Aribindi: Wow. Okay, I’m not sure if that is typical of these types of agreements, but maybe it should be. Faced with the prospect of that, you’d think these companies might do a little better? I really can’t think of anything worse than facing the families of the people that their negligence has affected. 


Tre’vell Anderson: Yeah, I wouldn’t want to be them in this situation at all. 


Priyanka Aribindi: Absolutely not for so many reasons. 


Tre’vell Anderson: Yeah. And those are the headlines. 




Tre’vell Anderson: That is all for today. If you like the show. Make sure you subscribe. Leave a review. Show the normies some love and tell your friends to listen. 


Priyanka Aribindi: And if you are into reading and not just a horror novel disguised as a GOP platform like me, What a Day is also a nightly newsletter. Check it out and subscribe at I’m Priyanka Aribindi.


Tre’vell Anderson: I’m Tre’vell Anderson. 


[spoken together] And we’d love to be treated as famous people. 


Priyanka Aribindi: Yeah, please. We’re like D-list not even I don’t know. But are we rounding up? I’d like to think of myself on the D-list. That feels like a good thing for me. 


Tre’vell Anderson: You know what? Let’s do it. Me, you, and Kathy Griffin. 


Priyanka Aribindi: Exactly. That’s who I think of every time. [laughter] [music break]


Tre’vell Anderson: What a Day is a production of Crooked Media. It’s recorded and mixed by Bill Lancz. Our associate producers are Raven Yamamoto and Natalie Bettendorf. We had production help today from Michell Eloy, Greg Walters, and Julia Claire. Our showrunner is Erica Morrison and our executive producer is Adriene Hill. Our theme music is by Colin Gilliard and Kashaka.