Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden. Picture: Getty/AFP
Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden. Picture: Getty/AFP

Biden’s ‘clown’ gibe as battle heats up

President Donald Trump has declared that Special Counsel Robert Mueller should not testify before Congress about his report on Russian interference in the 2016 election, saying there should be "no redos" for the Democrats.

Mr Trump tweeted angrily in response to suggestions Mr Mueller could appear before the House Judiciary Committee on May 15, saying the report had already shown "no collusion" with the Russians.

"After spending more than $35,000,000 ($A50m) over a two year period, interviewing 500 people, using 18 Trump Hating Angry Democrats & FBI Agents - all culminating in a more than 400 page Report showing NO COLLUSION - why would the Democrats in Congress now need Robert Mueller .... to testify," he tweeted.

"Are they looking for a redo because they hated seeing the strong NO COLLUSION conclusion? There was no crime, except on the other side (incredibly not covered in the Report), and NO OBSTRUCTION. Bob Mueller should not testify. No redos for the Dems!"

Mr Trump was responding to Democratic member of the House Judiciary Committee David Cicilline, who said a "tentative date" of May 15 had been identified for Mr Mueller to appear before the panel.

Mr Cicilline told Fox News "we hope the special counsel will appear" on May 15 and that "we think the American people have a right to hear directly from him".

Fox News said it was possible that Attorney General William Barr could block Mueller from appearing, since the special counsel is still a Justice Department employee. But Barr has said he has no objection to Mueller testifying.

BIDEN LASHES TRUMP

Former Vice President Joe Biden has nicknamed President Donald Trump "clown" and claimed that Mr Trump was about to "squander alliances" built over generations, warning again that world leaders were "worried" about his behaviour.

According to Fox News, Mr Biden told a private fundraising event that he didn't want to get down in the mud with Trump, but if he had to choose a moniker for the current White House occupant it would be a "clown."

"There's so many nicknames I'm inclined to give this guy," Mr Biden said, according to Politico. "You can just start with clown.

According to Fox News, Mr Biden told a private fundraising event that he didn't want to get down in the mud with Trump, but if he had to choose a moniker for the current White House occupant it would be a "clown."

"There's so many nicknames I'm inclined to give this guy," Mr Biden said, according to Politico. "You can just start with clown."

Mr Trump, who, during his 2016 presidential run, famously began doling out nicknames like "Crooked" Hillary Clinton, "Lyin" Ted Cruz and "Low Energy" Jeb Bush - has labelled Mr Biden as "Sleepy Joe" when the former vice president declared his White House bid in April.

He also called Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Elizabeth Warren "Pocahontas" after she claimed Native American heritage.

President Donald Trump nicknamed former Vice President Joe Biden “Sleepy Joe”. Picture: AP
President Donald Trump nicknamed former Vice President Joe Biden “Sleepy Joe”. Picture: AP

Mr Biden said Trump's nicknames were part of his war of words with his political rivals that are meant to keep the discussions away from the issues.

"On every single issue and on every demeaning thing he says about other people, I have no problem responding directly," Mr Biden said. "What I'm not going to do is get into what he wants me to do. He wants this to be a mud wrestling match."

According to Politico, Mr Biden also told the group he regretted once saying if he were in high school he would have taken Mr Trump around back and "beat the hell out of him."

"Well guess what? I probably shouldn't have done that," Mr Biden said. "I don't want to get it down to that level."

Mr Biden flubbed on his foreign leaders as he highlighted his foreign policy background as he made the case for running.

"I think, whether I'm right or not, I know as much about American foreign policy as anyone around, including even maybe Kissinger. I say that because I've been doing it my entire adult life," Mr Biden said.

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. “I knew her too,” Mr Biden said after confusing her with current PM Theresa May. Picture: Supplied
Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. “I knew her too,” Mr Biden said after confusing her with current PM Theresa May. Picture: Supplied

"One I can say is Margaret Thatcher, um, excuse me, Margaret Thatcher - Freudian slip. But I knew her too. The prime minister of Great Britain, Theresa May."

Mr Trump has recently stepped up his attacks on social media - blasting everyone from the media reporting on Special Counsel Robert Mueller's Russia report to social media for being an alleged partner of the Democratic Party.

British Prime Minister Theresa May sought assurances that the UK and the US “still have a special relationship”, Mr Biden said. Picture: AP
British Prime Minister Theresa May sought assurances that the UK and the US “still have a special relationship”, Mr Biden said. Picture: AP

Mr Biden said that Trump's behaviour - both on and off social media - has worried his fellow world leaders and that "at least 14 world leaders" have called him during Trump's tenure to express their unease.

Mr Biden said British Prime Minister Theresa May asked him directly for reassurance that the U.S. and the United Kingdom "still have a special relationship."

TRUMP THREATENS NEW CHINA TRADE TARIFFS

President Donald Trump has raised the spectre of increasing tariffs on $US200 billion ($A285b) in Chinese goods and imposing levies on hundreds of billions of dollars of additional imports "shortly," in a move designed to strong arm China into signing off on a final trade deal.

"For 10 months, China has been paying Tariffs to the USA of 25% on 50 Billion Dollars of High Tech, and 10% on 200 Billion Dollars of other goods," Mr. Trump tweeted.

"These payments are partially responsible for our great economic results. The 10% will go up to 25% on Friday. 325 Billions Dollars of additional goods sent to us by China remain untaxed, but will be shortly, at a rate of 25%.

"The Trade Deal with China continues, but too slowly, as they attempt to renegotiate. No!"

Chinese negotiators arrive in Washington this week for more trade talks, with many people in the capital believing this could possibly be the last chance to strike at least an in principle trade agreement.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, who visited Beijing last week, has expressed optimism about the trade talks, which he said are in "final laps", with White House advisers believing a deal is likely to be reached.