by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
When The New York Times begins publishing op-eds saying Joe Biden should not run again, and that he should announce it soon, then the gig is officially up. Biden is a lame duck. Perhaps someone should tell him.
Columnist Bret Stephens is right to note that the president would be 86 years old at the time of the next election cycle, and that he now “seems … uneven. Often cogent, but sometimes alarmingly incoherent.” More simply, Joe is old and tottering—and he’s unpopular to a startling degree.
As Stephens notes, even passage of a multi-trillion-dollar “infrastructure” spending bill didn’t boost his numbers much. He suggests the president liberate his party by freeing new (and younger) candidates to begin exploring a path to the presidency.
Sure, the question of Joe’s future “need(s) to be discussed candidly, not just whispered constantly.” At the same time, can we also ask the other obvious question candidly?
Why did the media cover for an elderly septuagenarian with clear age-related issues, thrusting him into a job he was never truly capable of holding—and subjecting the nation to a dangerous period without a strong leader? It’s fine to have a mea culpa moment, and truth delivered late is better than truth denied forever, but as the nation stumbles along with a puppet president there should be some accountability.
Just a year after a record 81 million Americans voted for Biden, they’re now being told it didn’t work out. Sorry. It’s coming within the timeframe of the traditional presidential “honeymoon,” that brief period presidents are normally at their zenith of political power and brimming to pass a bold agenda.
Perhaps we should give the public some adjustment time to avoid whiplash from this quick pivot.