8 Words And A Verbal Slip Renewed Democrats’ Fears – State of the Union
President Joe Biden’s appearance at a news conference aimed at reassuring the public about his mental acuity backfired when he made a verbal mistake, mistakenly referring to the president of Egypt as the president of Mexico.
The incident, coupled with a special counsel’s report highlighting Biden’s age and memory, brought concerns about his fitness for office back into the political conversation.
“Fair or not, you can’t unring the bell,” David Axelrod said. The report “goes to the core of what is plaguing Biden politically now, which is a widespread fear that he’s not up to it.”
Despite the Biden campaign’s efforts to paint the election as a choice between Biden and Trump, doubts about Biden’s age persist, and his missteps are magnified due to his team’s tight control over his media exposure.
“The most damaging things in politics are the things that confirm people’s preexisting suspicions, and those are the things that travel very fast. It’s a problem,” he said.
The report, while absolving Biden of criminal wrongdoing, emphasized his “diminished faculties in advancing age,” raising concerns among Democrats and providing ammunition for Republicans.
“The report confirms what Americans have been witnessing across their TV screens for the last few years — that an elderly man with a poor memory is leading America into a morass of wars, inflationary disaster and lack of opportunity for taxpaying Americans,” strategist Chris LaCivita said.
“The folks writing this report, they are lawyers, they’re not doctors,” Rep. Robert Garcia said. “This person’s a Republican who couldn’t find any evidence. He’s probably trying to hurt the president politically.”
“This, for many of us, brings back the 11 days prior to Clinton-Trump,” Democratic strategist Bakari Sellers said. “The blessing for Biden is that he was old before this report, he’ll be old after this report. We all knew he is old.”
“The public does not view his age as — that’s not a Fox News issue,” Democratic strategist James Carville said. “It’s not a Taylor Swift rigging the Super Bowl kind of thing. So — I don’t know how you get out of this.”
“The whole day,” he added, “was confirming an existing suspicion.”