PHILADELPHIA: Even as United States President Joe Biden continues to double down on his rhetoric, branding the 'MAGA' supporters of his predecessor Donald Trump as "semi-fascists" and "a threat to our democracy", Republican party faithfuls continue to find new ways to smear their political rival with the most bizarre of insults. This time, they settled on the moniker 'PedoHitler' after the US President's fiery 'Soul of the Nation' speech.
Taking to the dias in Philadelphia earlier today, Biden delivered sharp criticism of alleged radicals in the Republican camp amid the dramatic widening of the political divide in the US.
Trump supporting Republicans were quick to condemn Biden for his remarks, and some in the MAGA camp compared his speech to German dictator Adolf Hitler's fiery deliveries against the Jews.
For the unversed, Republicans have often accused the 79-year-old Biden of being a 'pedophile' (minor attracted person) ever since videos surfaced showing him in close proximity to children at a White House event during his stint as Vice President during the Barack Obama regime (2008-16).
Fact-checking site Politifact, in an article dedicated exclusively to addressing these rumours, says: "In Biden's more than 40 years of public life — including two prior runs for the Democratic presidential nomination and eight years as vice president — there have been no formal accusations, complaints, arrests or investigations that implicate him in any sort of sex crimes involving kids."
However, some adult women, including former US Senate staffer Tara Reade, have accused him of sexual misconduct.
'Cat Turd 2', a conservative account with over 800,000 followers set the ball rolling on this new trend, mobilizing his supporters to trend the hashtag 'PedoHitler' to troll the Democrats.
"Joe Biden's Satanic speech tonight is the biggest backfire I've ever seen. #PedoHitler," the person who handles the account wrote in a tweet.
In a follow up tweet, he said that #PedoHitler had been tweeted over 132,000 times, making it one of the top trends globally.
This absurd phrase soon rose to the second spot among political trends in the country.
However, not all who joined the #PedoHitler bandwagon are supporters of the former president.
Democrats are also using the hashtag to come to Biden's defense. They have countered by saying the moniker applies more to Trump, who has also faced similar accusations in the past.
"I see #PedoHitler is trending. This is because Trump was accused of raping a 13 year old with Jeffrey Epstein. It's because Trump wanted his generals to behave like "German Generals" from WW2. It's because Trump said there were "very fine people" at a Charlottesville Nazi rally,' wrote Dash Dobrofsky, an avid supporter of the Democrat party.
Earlier, Biden, terming the United States' Constitution as "rock upon which this nation is built", warned that "equality and democracy are under assault", irking Republicans.
"Donald Trump and the MAGA Republicans represent an extremism that threatens the foundations of our Republic," Biden's said in his speech that gains significance ahead of the mid-term elections
He clarified, however, that "not every Republican is a MAGA Republican."
The Democrat party leader also criticized some in the Republican camp for "refusing to accept the result of a free and fair election."
Biden's scathing remarks come amid Republicans' criticism of his alleged "weakness" amid rising global tensions in view of the Russian invasion of Ukraine and rising energy costs in its aftermath. In view of the crises plaguing his first term, Biden has seen his approval rating plummet to 38% (according to a Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll).
Relations between the Republicans and Democrats have also soured due to Trump's claims that he "won" the 2020 election which was called in favour of Biden. On January 6, many Republicans stormed the US Capitol building, leading experts to speculate that they were incited by Trump's rhetoric. An investigation into the same is going on.