The latest gaffe committed by former Vice President Joe Biden took place when the candidate for president was making a speech in Iowa.
Fox News explains:
“They say if you can remember the 1960s, you probably weren’t there.
Well, Joe Biden missed by about a decade Tuesday evening when he mentioned two significant events of the 1960s: the assassinations of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Sen. Robert F. Kennedy.
The gaffe came during a speech in Iowa, while the 76-year-old Biden was comparing the years of his young adulthood to the current day.
Just like in my generation, when I got out of school when Bobby Kennedy and Dr. King had been assassinated in the ’70s, the late ’70s when I got engaged … , Biden recalled.
But King and Kennedy were murdered in 1968, about two months apart.
The slipup, dating the two of the most traumatic events of the 1960s, is the latest alarming thing to come out of the mouth of the Democratic frontrunner. The gaffes ranged from “choosing truth over facts” to thinking that he was in Burlington, Vermont and not Burlington, Iowa.
The problem has gotten so serious that the Biden campaign has had to trot out the neurosurgeon who operated on the then senator’s brain.
The surgeon maintained that he had found no brain damage during the surgery that could explain the series of misstatements that have many people questioning Biden’s mental health.
The Biden campaign has attempted to divert attention from the issue by releasing the first political commercial which has the former vice president attacking President Trump’s character and mental health.
Along with the boilerplate stuff about Biden wanting to improve on Obamacare, invest in education, lead on climate, and restore American alliances, the commercial tried to compare and contract the former vice president with President Trump. The commercial called Trump “erratic” “vicious” and “bullying” and Biden “steady,” “stable,” and “strong.” Biden is going to “restore the soul of the nation.”
So far, the strategy seems to be working. Every poll shows Biden very ahead of his Democratic rivals and beating Trump in the 2020 elections. A Politico/Morning Consult Poll has Biden up seven over Trump.
A previous Fox News Poll had him 12 points ahead of the president. Most analysts suggest that head to head surveys this far away from the general election are meaningless.
The commercial and a recent statement by Biden’s wife, Dr. Jill Biden, suggests that the main strategy is not so much an attempt to go head to head with the other Democrats on the issues. The Democratic base tends to like Biden’s three liberal opponents, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, and Kamala Harris, though the latter is fading in the polls, on the issues.
The main argument for Biden is electability. The campaign is also trying to distract from the former vice president’s gaffes. The message is that Biden, an elder statesman, will restore some kind of steadiness to governance.
And the campaign never fails to mention that Biden was President Barack Obama’s vice president. Despite Obama’s somewhat spotty performance when he was in the White House, he remains beloved among the Democratic base, even as it starts to move left from his policies.
Biden’s gaffes have raised a debate in the media. Some, like the Washington Post’s Paul Waldman, suggest that liberals should “lay off” Biden’s gaffes. Corey Fenwick, writing for Salon, is pleased to disagree.
“And let’s be clear: If Biden is the nominee, these issues will arise during the 2020 campaign. We might as well have the discussion about these questions now, and if it’s a devastating attack on him, then Biden deserves to be knocked out of the race. If he can laugh it off and convince voters it doesn’t matter, all the better. But one of the worries is that we knew this was coming. Biden himself has said he is a ‘gaffe machine.’ And his previous presidential campaigns have been dismal failures. He knew this scrutiny was coming, and yet he seems to do little to avoid it. Whether he can overcome this personal obstacle is a big question.”
Fenwick is expressing the one, overwhelming fear that Democrats harbor. They are afraid that the electability argument will not survive contact with Donald Trump, a relentless campaigner who is adroit at focusing and exploiting an opponent’s weakness.
That “big question” that Fenwick poses may be answered when it is too late after Biden is the nominee.