Former Obama Adviser Axelrod Says Biden’s Age ‘Major Issue’ For 2024, But Is That The Only Issue?
It feels as though whispered concerns over President Biden’s age and viability to be President, let alone run for re-election, have been circulating among Democratic circles since the inauguration.
These whispers have risen to at least audible levels as Biden and the Democrats face a possible shellacking in the upcoming midterms.
David Axelrod, former campaign strategist and advisor to President Obama, told the New York Times what all of us already knew:
“The presidency is a monstrously taxing job and the stark reality is the President would be closer to 90 than 80 at the end of a second term, and that would be a major issue.”
Surprisingly, the left’s social justice warriors aren’t up in arms over the explicit ageism shown by Mr. Axelrod. Could it be because the country is overwhelmingly run by those who can order off the senior citizen menu at most restaurants?
Democrats are waking up to Biden's age issue, strategists say https://t.co/joT6euhxQu
— Fox News (@FoxNews) June 13, 2022
President Biden will be 82 years old in 2024. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is 82 years old. Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is 71 years old, quite the whippersnapper comparatively.
Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is 80 years old. The average age of the Senate last year was 64, making it the most senior Senate in our history.
Does age always signify a decline in health and abilities? Not necessarily.
The President, known for what used to be looked at as lovable gaffes, has had an increase in verbal missteps that have caused more alarm than acceptance. Just recently, in a CNN broadcast, the President replied to a reporter that he was not planning yet to go to Saudi Arabia.
Only to answer a reporter seconds later when asked, “What would stop the decision at this point? Are there any commitments from the Saudis that you’re waiting for?”
“It just so happens to be a major meeting taking place in Saudi Arabia. That’s why I’m leaving.”
It appears the President is unsure if he is staying… or going.
Back from his weekend in Delaware, Joe Biden strolled into work today at a cool 12:30 p.m.pic.twitter.com/itKwCkelcL
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) June 13, 2022
If Not Joe, Then Who?
According to Statista, in 2020, 65% of the our population is between the age of 15 and 64. You can drive a few semi-trucks through that age range if you could afford the gas, but it does paint a fascinating picture of what ages aren’t included in that statistic.
Former Governor of Vermont Howard Dean, who is 73 years old and backed Pete Buttigieg in the last election, said of his fellow Silver Sneaker political comrades:
“The generation after me is just a complete trash heap.”
There is an argument that perhaps the country needs younger blood to choose from to run our country. So if President Biden opts not to run in 2024, who would be the Democratic nominee?
Historical precedence points to Vice President Kamala Harris, 57 years old. Not a great choice if you look at her poll numbers.
Don't be afraid of failure. No one who didn't fail ever got to the top.
Look at Kamala Harris, she made a career of failing upwards!
— PJ Williams ✝️?? (@PJ_Patriot) June 7, 2022
Tasked with solving the immigration crisis, she’s done less than stellar. With a caravan en route expected to reach 15,000 and the three Presidents she met with all opting not to attend the Summit of the Americas, hosted by President Biden.
The goal of the Summit? Curb illegal immigration and form stronger alliances among the Americas. I imagine much of the familiar nervous, awkward laughter is being heard this week from the VP’s office.
Numbers Don’t Lie
“He (Biden) looks his age and isn’t as agile in front of a camera as he once was, and this has fed a narrative about competence that isn’t rooted in reality.”
The argument Mr. Axelrod is attempting to make is that the optics of President Biden as an old shuffling man are causing Americans to assume he isn’t doing a good job.
Biden approval has fallen 5 points in the last two weeks.
At this point in his term, Trump's approval was 11 points higher.https://t.co/yzezdNmCL7
— Rasmussen Reports (@Rasmussen_Poll) June 13, 2022
But the numbers don’t reflect the same sentiment. According to a Quinnipiac University poll conducted last week, the President’s approval rating sits at a dismal 33%.
The data from the poll doesn’t suggest that Americans are frustrated with the President’s age, but with his actual performance.
“Biden doesn’t get the credit he deserves for steering the country through the worst of the pandemic, passing historic legislation, pulling the NATO alliance together against Russian aggression and restoring decency and decorum to the White House.”
Within the same poll, 64% of Americans say they are unhappy with how he has handled the economy. Gas prices and inflation have reached historic heights. Coupled with the fact that our country has to airlift baby formula from across the ocean to feed American babies.
Only 42% in the same poll approve of the President’s handling of Ukraine. Watching billions of dollars go to another country to support a war whose length has defied the initial predictions of our military ‘experts’ while Americans struggle to make ends meet at home is part of that low number.
The Blame Game
Few want to place blame on the President for his substandard approval ratings. Cristobal Alex, a former senior adviser for the Biden campaign, claims the responsibility of congressional Democrats is to highlight Biden’s successes and pass his legislation.
An assumptive dig at Democrats like Senator Joe Manchin, who has steadily thwarted Biden’s legislative attacks throughout the administration term. He must be focused on what his constituents want versus what the President would like, for shame!
The President recently took a stroll on Air Force One to the press section to verbally scold them for causing his issues with the American people. It appears he feels the press isn’t covering him fairly.
President Biden complained about the press on Kimmel last night.
(His last interview with a *journalist* was 119 days ago – Feb. 10. Since taking office he’s done fewer interviews than Trump, Obama, Bush, Clinton, George HW Bush, & Reagan at this point in their presidencies) pic.twitter.com/Zo0TijRlvI
— Jacqui Heinrich (@JacquiHeinrich) June 9, 2022
However, the President’s last real interview with a reporter was in February. I emphasize real because I don’t think going on Jimmy Kimmel’s show constitutes a press interview.
New York Times White House correspondent Peter Baker who has interviewed the last four presidents but has yet to get an interview with President Biden, told Politico:
“…the President talks about defending democracy and that’s part of democracy too – answering questions from people not on your side.”
Optics, or Just Reality
Mr. Axelrod’s claim that President Biden’s age will be a significant issue in 2024 doesn’t hold up when you take a whole picture view of his time as President.
But his plummeted approval ratings, failures to deliver on campaign promises, and apparent aversion to any actual press engagements will more than likely have at least equal if not more significant impact on how voters choose to act in 2024.
Joe Biden, just an elderly bystander to events in this country happening around him. Give the guy a break already. https://t.co/iJ4UbjOFMD
— Stephen L. Miller (@redsteeze) May 14, 2022
If the Democratic Party decides to trade in for a younger or newer model, do they have better options? Or is it more of the same incompetence but with better joints and eyesight?
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