NATO: Joe Biden greets President Erdogan at Brussels summit

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Attending a NATO summit in Brussels, President Biden criticised Donald Trump’s “phony populism” and swiped at Republican Party lawmakers who are still under the influence of the former President. Even after leaving Washington, the disgruntled Mr Trump still continues to hold influence in the Capitol.

Mr Biden said: “I think it’s appropriate to say that the Republican Party is vastly diminished in numbers, the leadership of the Republican Party is fractured and the Trump wing of the party is the bulk of the party, but it makes of a significant minority of the American people.”

After leaving office in the wake of the Capitol riots on January 6, Donald Trump still remains popular with republican voters.

A Politico poll in May found that half of Republicans surveyed would vote for Mr Trump in a hypothetical 2024 presidential rerun.

At the end of May, a bill aiming to create a “9/11-type commission” to investigate the events leading up to the Capitol hill riots was blocked by Senate Republicans.

The bill was rejected in a vote of 54-35, falling short of the 60 votes needed.

Commenting on the decision to block the bill, Mr Biden said it was a “consequence of President Trump’s phony populism”.

He said: “It is disappointing that so many of my Republican colleagues in the Senate who I know, know better have been reluctant to take on, for example, an investigation because they’re worried about being primaried.

“But at the end of the day we’ve been through periods like this in American history before, where there has been this reluctance to take a chance on your re-election because of the nature of your party’s politics at the moment.”

“I think this is passing, I don’t mean easily passing.”

During the wide ranging interview with reporters following the summit, Mr Biden continued to underline the importance of NATO and how its interests were aligned with the US.

NATO leaders are keen for stronger relations with the US after Donald Trump previously threatened ties to the military alliance, calling it “obsolete”.

Mr Biden hailed the “strong foundation” of the group and addressed common concerns such as the pandemic, confronting cyber attacks and threats from Russia and China.

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The US President will sit down with Vladimir Putin on Wednesday to discuss cyber attacks, the pandemic and recent tensions.

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