Left-wing pundits from Chris Cuomo to Joe Scarborough were aghast following Pennsylvania Democratic Senate candidate John Fetterman’s “painful” debate performance Tuesday evening.
The term ‘painful’ is being incredibly kind.
Fetterman squared off against Republican candidate Mehmet Oz, where it became immediately evident why the Democrat’s campaign wanted nothing to do with debating from the onset.
The performance did more than call into question Fetterman’s mental capabilities following a stroke he suffered back in May. It proved beyond a doubt that he is unfit to serve.
And those around Fetterman knew it. His campaign tried to temper expectations prior to the debate – issuing a statement warning that viewers would see “awkward pauses” and other communication “errors” – there was no amount of warning that could prepare Pennsylvania voters for what actually took place.
The Fetterman campaign spent all week implying the debate was going to go poorly and somehow it was still much, much worse than anyone expected #PASen
— Jordan Chamberlain (@jordylancaster) October 26, 2022
RELATED: Video: NBC News Admits Democrat John Fetterman Can’t Understand Speech, Needs Transcripts
Fetterman/Oz Debate Was a Debacle For The Democrat
John Fetterman’s debate performance, it was clear, was going off the rails early and often. How early? About 10 seconds in.
“What qualifies you to be a U.S. senator?” the debate moderator asked.
“Hi. Good night everybody,” came the response.
Fetterman opens the debate:
“Hi. Good night everybody.” pic.twitter.com/mg0X3Iwf5D
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) October 26, 2022
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From there it got worse. Much worse. And often.
Fox News host Tucker Carlson described the debate as a “full-blown 30-car Amtrak derailment for Fetterman.”
Responding to claims by Oz that he had failed to pay his taxes, the Democrat who may hold the key to power in the Senate following the 2022 midterms replied, and I quote:
“It was helping two students 17 years ago to help them buy their own homes. They for and didn’t pay the bills and got are paid and it has never been an issue in any of the campaign before.”
I’m sorry, what now?
[Oz has] said you have not paid your taxes … how do you respond?”
Fetterman: “It was helping two students 17 years ago to help them buy their own homes. They for and didn’t pay the bills and got are paid and it has never been an issue in any of the campaign before.” pic.twitter.com/hv5M4YWc0a
— Washington Free Beacon (@FreeBeacon) October 26, 2022
When Oz pointed out that Fetterman had been financially supported by his parents and received a house from his sister for one dollar, the reply was: “He [Oz] got his Pennsylvania house from his own in ladies for $1. That’s typical.”
Oz: “Fetterman didn’t pay for his own house. He got it for a dollar from his sister.”
Fetterman: “He got his Pennsylvania house from his own in ladies for $1. That’s typical.” pic.twitter.com/Es1jlhX5kB
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) October 26, 2022
The response was not typical.
Fetterman sputtered his way through commentary that the “most American bargain” is the ability to “work full-time” and to “be able to live in dignity is well true.”
John Fetterman can’t speak. This is disqualifying. Just watch. Answers like this are happening over and over again: pic.twitter.com/vnRQ0GMbtL
— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) October 26, 2022
Perhaps the pièce de résistance of the entire night was Fetterman’s response to having flip-flopped his position on fracking – a key platform for Pennsylvania voters.
After the debate moderator pointed to a statement in 2018 in which the candidate said “I don’t support fracking at all,” Fetterman slowly responded: “Uh, I do support fracking, and, I don’t—I don’t—I support fracking, and I stand, and I do support fracking.”
Fetterman just melts down after a long pause when confronted about his flip flopping on fracking. pic.twitter.com/ceGtuNt61J
— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) October 26, 2022
RELATED: Report: Democrat John Fetterman’s Brother Tased Man in Front of His ‘Physically Challenged’ Son During Road Rage Incident
Even Liberals Were Putting Their Heads Down in Embarrassment
It’s difficult not to dip back into the memory banks and think that Fetterman’s debate performance was eerily reminiscent of this response from Miss Teen South Carolina in 2007.
And while Democrats and the media would have no mercy if the roles were reversed and this were a Republican struggling on stage, it’s hard not to feel some level of sympathy for Fetterman.
Why did his handlers allow this campaign at all? Why do they continue to abuse an unwell man by forcing him to run for Congress when he is unqualified and incoherent?
If Fetterman were a Republican, this debate would be an SNL cold open.
— Tim Young (@TimRunsHisMouth) October 26, 2022
The performance was so frighteningly bad that even the staunchest liberal pundits had a tough time putting any positive spin on what they had just witnessed.
NewsNation host and disgraced ex-CNN employee Chris Cuomo provided the understatement of the evening, saying Fetterman “struggled.”
“He clearly is dealing with health issues that affect his ability to process and his ability to speak,” Cuomo said. “Clearly, fitness for office is going to be on the table.”
CHRIS CUOMO on tonight’s #PASen debate: “Voters, I think, saw things that will definitely change the state of this race.”
“Fetterman struggled … I don’t think his preparation was great.” pic.twitter.com/Hy58N3OD41
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) October 26, 2022
MSNBC’s resident loon, Joe Scarborough, admitted Fetterman’s “ability to communicate is seriously impaired” and added it was “painful to watch regardless of one’s politics.”
“Pennsylvania voters will be talking about this obvious fact even if many in the media will not,” he added.
John Fetterman’s ability to communicate is seriously impaired. Pennsylvania voters will be talking about this obvious fact even if many in the media will not.
— Joe Scarborough (@JoeNBC) October 26, 2022
David Axelrod, a Democrat strategist who served as a senior adviser to Obama, was equally dismayed.
“Fetterman needed to show he’s sufficiently recovered, and this debate surely did not help,” he wrote.
Fetterman needed to show he’s sufficiently recovered, and this debate surely did not help.
Oz needed to show authenticity, decency and connection. I’m sure his team is high-fiving tonight but he didn’t help himself on those essential scores.
Maybe neither of them could.
— David Axelrod (@davidaxelrod) October 26, 2022
Numerous other left-leaning political pundits far and wide panned the Fetterman debate performance.
It is very painful
— Elizabeth Vargas (@EVargasTV) October 26, 2022
I spoke to Fetterman recently, and I expected him to be very bad tonight. But he was much much worse than I expected (and much worse than in our one-on-one conversation.)
— Charlotte Alter (@CharlotteAlter) October 26, 2022
There is no amount of empathy for and understanding about Fetterman’s health and recovery that changes the fact that this is absolutely painful to watch.
— Olivia Nuzzi (@Olivianuzzi) October 26, 2022
The debate was vindication for NBC News journalist Dasha Burns who, earlier this month, revealed shocking video showing Fetterman needing assistance from a transcription program to understand the questions being asked of him face-to-face.
Pennsylvania Lt. Governor and Democratic Senate candidate John Fetterman sat down with @DashaBurns in an exclusive interview using closed captioning.
Fetterman discussed his recovery after suffering a stroke in the primaries and his race against Republican Dr. Mehmet Oz. pic.twitter.com/0fee1cKXgY
— NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt (@NBCNightlyNews) October 11, 2022
“In small talk before the interview without captioning, it wasn’t clear he was understanding our conversation,” Burns told viewers.
She was widely criticized by the left-wing media for calling out Fetterman’s clear and obvious disability.
It’s evident that Burns’ concerns were warranted after Tuesday evening. It’s clear that Fetterman has no business running for a Senate seat when he can barely form complete sentences.
And it’s clear that Pennsylvania voters should be ashamed that this race is even close. Poll numbers will be interesting after this mighty car wreck.
John Fetterman is not fit to serve as a United States Senator. We all just saw it.
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The race is close……because there are voters who don’t care about the candidated qualifications, only care about the political party. Vote democtat and hope for the best. Ignore the repblican’s competent candidate. HE might support Trump, afterall, thats the worst.
Looked like a defatted Thanos
They will vote for him anyway. Biden told them he was going to shut down the coal and mining industry and they couldn’t wait to run to the polls and vote for him. Even after he thought he was in Delaware and his granddaughter was his dead son. Not a lot of brain power there in PA.
And yet people will still vote for him . DUH
Painful is a total understatement.
His team should just pull him from the RACE and stop this.
he is totally UNFIT
yes people do have strokes and come back but NEVER 100%
some have difficulty walking some have difficulty speaking thinking writing
unless he plans on walking his answers
he might as well HANG IT UP
we don’t need another one talking bidenese and thinking bidenese
Festerman would be unfit for office even if he hadn’t had a stroke and that is the real point! The policies he supports are bad for PA and bad for the country!
He should have been asked to find South Africa on a map.