National Security Council spokesman John Kirby

CNN Presses John Kirby On Whether Biden Can Protect Nation If He Has To ‘Get More Sleep’

National Security Council spokesman John Kirby
National Security Council spokesman John Kirby

CNN host Kate Bolduan asked White House national security spokesperson John Kirby if President Joe Biden could safeguard the United States if he needed to sleep early and work less.

One person familiar with Biden’s remarks told The New York Times that, after his poor debate performance, he claimed he must decrease his working hours and avoid attending events past 8 p.m. during a meeting with more than 20 Democratic governors.

Bolduan on “CNN News Central” asked Kirby about her outlet’s corroborative reporting whether Biden is able to secure the country if he is incapable of working strenuous hours.

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“I can appreciate it may be uncomfortable to offer such an assessment on your boss at any point, but especially publicly and on television, but Biden himself has said for months and months that age is legitimate issue,” Bolduan said. “And something we saw last week is CNN is reporting that Biden told Democratic governors that part of his plan going forward after the debate was to stop scheduling events after 8 p.m. so that he could get more sleep. From a national security perspective, can any president be effective if they have a cut-off time at 8 p.m.?”

“Well, I think the White House denied those claims and that reporting, Kate, but let‘s set that aside for a second,” Kirby responded. “He’s the president of the United States, commander in chief and that‘s a 24 hour job seven days a week. And from my experience here, and I’ve seen it firsthand, on the road and here in Washington, D.C., if the national security team needs to get to the president, they get to the president, and it doesn’t matter what the hour on the clock says. He’s always there, he’s always available. And they have ready access to him. And he also knows that the world doesn’t take a breather after a certain time of day.”

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Biden said his trips to France, California and Italy two weeks ahead of the debate impacted his performance during his meeting with the governors, the NYT reported. He also disclosed he communicated to his staff that he required more rest, but that he persistently attempts to push himself and bypasses his staff’s worries regarding his schedule.

“He’s constantly peppering the team with questions, again, around the clock. That’s the commander-in-chief that I’ve seen,” Kirby added. “And more critically, Kate, as the commander in chief, knows he has to be, and he has been here for the last three and a half years.”

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