President Joe Biden went to great pains on Tuesday to avoid saying former President Donald Trump’s name during a CNN town hall, even lamenting that he’s “tired” of talking about the former president, who, even after leaving office, has loomed large over American politics.


Asked by moderator Anderson Cooper about Trump’s acquittal during a Senate impeachment trial on Saturday, Biden lamented that “for four years, all that’s been in the news is Trump.”

Biden said he is “tired” of talking about Trump, stating “it’s done” and expressing a desire to “make sure all the news is the American people” during the next four years of his presidency.

Biden alluded to Trump several times throughout the night, particularly blaming some of the nation’s current vaccine woes on a lack of infrastructure left behind by his predecessor, but rarely used his name, even once referring to him as “the former guy.”

While discussing his presidential legacy, Biden also revealed he has called former presidents, though declined to specify which ones, adding, “All of them have, with one exception, picked up the phone and called me as well.”

Cooper noted that this was likely a reference to Trump, telling Biden in response, “I know you don’t want to talk about him.”


The 2020 campaign was one of the harshest in living memory as Trump launched brutal attacks on Biden’s family – even calling to “lock up the Bidens” at one point – and on his mental health. That all came to a head when Trump refused to concede the election, culminating in a brutal assault by his supporters on the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.


“It’s a good thing he’s not showing up,” Biden said of Trump’s decision not to attend his inauguration shortly after the Capitol attack – an uncharacteristically ferocious attack from the typically-said Biden. “He exceeded even my worst notions about him. He’s been an embarrassment to the country… He’s not worthy to hold that office.”


Biden said he had never been to the White House residence before taking office and revealed he’s “extremely self-conscious” about the treatment he gets as president. He even quipped that when he wakes up each day, he turns to First Lady Jill Biden and asks, “Where the hell are we?”


Biden likely will not get his wish for Trump discourse to dissipate. Trump signaled on Tuesday that he has little intention of keeping quiet now that he’s left office, releasing a statement slamming Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and revealing plans to support right-wing primary challengers against incumbent Senate Republicans.