When Scott Pelley of “60 Minutes” asked President Joe Biden about whether he was fit for the job at his age, Biden offered a terse response: “Watch me.”
Americans do watch, and yet Biden himself continues to sow doubt about whether he is mentally up to the task of running the nation.
The latest in a string of episodes came at a White House event Wednesday when Biden appeared to search for a Republican lawmaker.
The problem was that she had died in early August.
Biden spoke Wednesday at the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health.
At one point Biden named several lawmakers from both parties that he wanted to thank for appearing at the event.
“And I want to thank all of you here, including bipartisan elected officials like Representative McGovern, Senator Braun, Senator Booker, Representative — Jackie, are you here? Where’s Jackie? I didn’t think she was — she wasn’t going to be here — to help make this a reality. And thanks to Senator Stabenow, and Representative DeLauro for their leadership.”
“Jackie” was Republican Rep. Jackie Walorski of Indiana, who had been co-chairwoman of the House Hunger Caucus. She died tragically in a car crash while in her home state on Aug. 3.
Biden even issued a statement at the time expressing his sorrow at her passing and ordering flags flown at half-mast in her honor.
Yet on Wednesday as he mumbled his way through the lineup of lawmakers, he indicated that he thought she was there.
The hideous gaffe even drew a joke from the notoriously anti-Trump, anti-conservative Trevor Noah.
He joked that Biden was actually looking for Jackie Kennedy.
“I know a lot of people are saying that this is another example of Biden’s brain being foggy, but I think if anything, this makes Biden a better president,” Noah added. “Think of how hard he must be working right now to keep Americans safe, knowing that Osama bin Laden is still out there somewhere.”
During a briefing, several White House reporters pressed Biden spokeswoman Karin Jean-Pierre about Biden’s gaffe.
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She repeatedly said that Biden did not screw up, but that he simply had Walorski “top of mind” when discussing the reason for the event.
According to The Washington Times, one reporter quipped, “I have John Lennon on top of mind just about every day but I’m not looking around for him.”
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Free Press.