Sometimes, when speaking to an octogenarian, you have to repeat yourself several times while raising your voice with each attempt just to be heard.
That appears to be happening in real time, and on a very public stage, with the president of the United States.
Joe Biden is sputtering toward a 2024 re-election bid, and it appears that his grand strategy from the 2020 general election will be carried over to the sequel — namely, “Look at me, I’m not Donald Trump!”
And while that strategy may have carried him to victory the last time around (and could again in 2024, given how deeply divided this country is), at the very least, that messaging is falling on increasingly deaf ears.
The latest example of that came from the leftist rag known as The Atlantic.
In a scathing article Friday titled “Step Aside, Joe Biden,” contributor Eliot A. Cohen tore into the president, though not without some sloppy sucking up to the current administration in the article’s opening lines.
“I am deeply grateful to Joe Biden. By defeating Donald Trump in 2020, he rescued this country from the continuing misrule of a dangerous grifter and serial liar, a man gripped by vindictiveness, lawlessness, and egomania,” Cohen wrote.
“By contrast, Biden presented himself, correctly, as a decent, experienced, and entirely normal politician. He may even have saved his country.
“Americans owe him a profound debt of respect and appreciation.”
Once you get the bile out of your mouth from reading that last line, consider just how hopelessly far gone this writer is.
Say whatever you want about Joe Biden and his “accomplishments,” but to claim he “may even have saved his country” is the kind of slobbering fan-fiction you’d expect from teenage “Twilight” fans — not a John Hopkins professor.
And yet even this hopelessly delusional NeverTrumper is coming around to the fact that lionizing Biden is simply no longer an option.
“He also has no business running for president at age 80,” Cohen wrote.
“I say that with considerable feeling, being in my late 60s and knowing that my 70s are not far off,” he said. “I am as healthy as any late-middle-aged person (admittedly, I cringe at the word old, which tells you something right there) can be. But I know that at this stage, I do not have the energy I had a decade ago. I forget more things, and if my body does not hurt when I wake up in the morning, a little voice in my head asks whether I am dead and do not yet know it.”
This writer genuinely wonders how often the current president wakes up and wonders if he’s dead, but that’s neither here nor there.
What is here, however, is serious concern about Biden’s ability to function as president.
It would have been fair to describe him as something of a husk of a politician when he first became vice president nearly 15 years ago. Tacking on another 5,284 days simply doesn’t help that perception.
“Clinging to office in old age is selfish, too,” Cohen wrote. You’d be excused if you were unsure whether he was speaking of Biden in 2023 or Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in 2019.
But as in that case, there appears to be a growing sentiment, even among Biden’s staunchest supporters, that the president needs to move aside.
Look, whether you think Biden has been a spectacular president or an utter failure of one, facts are facts. Should he win re-election, he will be 86 years old at the end of his second term, and that is literally uncharted territory in the grand experiment that has been American politics.
You can’t blame his most ardent supporters (or sycophants, in the case of Cohen) for expressing doubt and consternation about his ability to lead.
And no, even Cohen conceded that Kamala Harris is simply not the answer should Biden not be able to function as president.
“Unfortunately, Vice President Kamala Harris, who has the résumé but seemingly not the political skills and heft to be a compelling presidential candidate, is a weak backfill,” he pointed out. “Moreover, if history is any guide, an ailing, declining president does not simply say, ‘You’re right, Doc, time for me to hand over the reins to the veep.’
“Rather, as Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and others have done, they delay and deny, aided and abetted by families and close advisers who refuse to accept reality.”
So. His VP is no good, he’s rapidly losing the faith of the liberal establishment and, due to the way in which time functions, he’s only getting older.
It truly feels like Republicans would have to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory for Biden to win re-election, given how this is all going for him right now.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
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