WATCH: President Biden speaks at NAACP Fight for Freedom Fund Dinner

Posted at 10:57 AM, May 01, 2024
and last updated 2024-05-19 18:30:08-04

(AP MODIFIED) — The NAACP hosted its Fight for Freedom Fund Dinner Sunday night, with keynote speaker President Joe Biden.

The 69th Annual Fight for Freedom Fund Dinner was held at Huntington Place and it kicked off at 5 p.m.

Organizers say the Fight for Freedom Fund Dinner is the largest sit down dinner of its kind in the world. The dinner launched in April 1956.

Watch President Biden's speech in the video player below:

President Biden speaks at NAACP Fight for Freedom Fund Dinner

At the NAACP dinner, Biden said that Trump wants to pardon those who were convicted of crimes during the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, and calls them “patriots.” He suggested that Trump would not have been so kind had they been people of color.

“Let me ask you, what do you think he would’ve done on Jan. 6 if Black Americans had stormed the Capitol?” Biden asked. “What do you think? I can only imagine.”

Asked for a response, Trump campaign spokeswoman Karoline Leavitt blasted Biden's remarks as “preposterous," describing them as a “desperate” attempt to divert attention from Biden's own record of weak poll numbers, high inflation and "violent protests and migrant crimes” across the country.

The speech gave Biden a chance to reach thousands of people in Wayne County, which historically has voted overwhelmingly Democratic but has shown signs of resistance to his reelection bid.

The county also holds one of the largest Arab American populations in the nation, predominantly in the city of Dearborn. Leaders there were at the forefront of an “uncommitted” effort that received over 100,000 votes in the state’s Democratic primary and spread across the country.

A protest rally and march against Biden’s visit took place in Dearborn in the afternoon.

In Detroit, guests at the NAACP dinner were met by over 200 pro-Palestinian protesters outside the entrance to the convention center. They waved Palestinian flags, held signs calling for a cease-fire and chanted “free, free Palestine.”