Want the best of VICE News straight to your inbox? Sign up here.
Things took a turn toward the contentious at an Iowa town hall for Joe Biden on Thursday, when an attendee alleged that the former vice president took advantage of his previous office to install his son Hunter on the board of a Ukrainian energy company.
Biden fired back at the man by calling him “a damn liar” — and then challenged him to an IQ test.
A video of the incident shows the audience member confronting Biden by alleging that he “sent [Hunter] over there to work for a gas company” while Biden was still vice president, and that Hunter “had no experience.”
“We all know Trump has been messing around in Ukraine,” the man said, before adding, “You’re selling access to the presidency, just like he is.”
“You’re a damn liar, man,” Biden replied. “That’s not true. And no one has ever said that.”
Later, the man tried to backpedal, saying, “I didn’t say you were doing anything wrong.”
Biden sniped, “You said I set my son up to work at an oil company. Isn’t that what you said? Get your words straight, Jack.”
“By the way, I’m not sedentary,” Biden added after the man said he had a problem with Biden’s age. Biden is 77.
“I’ve been around a long time and I know more than most people. And I can get things done. That’s why I’m running,” Biden said to applause. “And you want to check my shape? Let’s do pushups here together, man. Let’s run. Let’s do whatever you wanna do. Let’s take an IQ test.”
When an aide tried to take the man’s microphone away, Biden instructed the aide to “let him go.”
The attendee, who identified himself only as an Iowa farmer who’s not a Republican, per Politico, claimed that he heard the allegations about Joe and Hunter Biden on MSNBC.
“You don’t hear it on MSNBC,” Biden said, walking away from him.
“The hell I didn’t,” the man replied.
Biden has largely avoided discussing Hunter on the campaign trail. But Biden has at times been forced to address the conspiracy theories, peddled by the right, that Biden forced the Ukrainian government to fire a prosecutor who was investigating a company that Hunter worked for.
Cover: Democratic presidential candidate, former Vice President Joe Biden speaks during a campaign stop on December 2, 2019 in Algona, Iowa. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)