Joe Biden has vowed to end America’s “season of darkness” under Donald Trump as he accepted the Democratic presidential nomination.
In a speech to end the Democratic Convention in Delaware, Mr Biden said the US president had “cloaked America in darkness for much too long”, accusing him of creating “too much anger, too much fear, too much division”.
“Here and now I give you my word, if you entrust me with the presidency, I will draw on the best of us not the worst,” Mr Biden said.
“I’ll be an ally of the light, not the darkness.
“And make no mistake, united we can and will overcome this season of darkness in America.”
The former US vice president to Barack Obama said he would represent all Americans if he wins the “life-changing” election in November.
“This is going to determine what America is going to look like for a long, long time,” he said.
“What we know about this president is that if he’s given four more years, he’ll be what he has been for the last four years – a president who takes no responsibility, refuses to lead, blames others, cosies up to dictators, and fans the flames of hate and division.
“He’ll wake up every day believing the job is about him, never about you.”
He added: “I will make it clear to our adversaries the days of cosying up to dictators are over.
“Under President Biden, America will not turn a blind eye to Russian bounties on the heads of American soldiers. Nor will I put up with foreign interference in our most sacred democratic exercise – voting.”
Mr Biden also offered a withering assessment of his opponent’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, with the US having the world’s highest recorded death toll from the virus.
“Our current president has failed in his most basic duty to the nation: he has failed to protect us,” he said.
Mr Biden said he decided to run after Mr Trump’s remark that there were “very fine people on both sides” in the wake of clashes involving white supremacists in Charlottesville three years ago.
“It was a wake-up call for us as a country,” he said.
“And for me, a call to action. At that moment, I knew I’d have to run. My father taught us that silence was complicity. And I could not remain silent or complicit.
“At the time, I said we were in a battle for the soul of this nation. And we are.”
During Mr Biden’s speech, Mr Trump responded by tweeting: “In 47 years, Joe did none of the things of which he now speaks. He will never change, just words!”
The final night of the four-day Democratic Convention was held at an empty arena due to COVID-19 restrictions.
At 77, he would be the oldest president ever elected if he defeats Mr Trump in November’s election.