Beware what you wish for. Last week, First Lady Jill Biden was kvetching to a small crowd of donors in Nantucket about the pitiful set of obstacles that poor Joe faces. President Biden, she said, “had so many hopes and plans for things he wanted to do, but every time you turned around, he had to address the problems of the moment.”
As the person most likely to know that Biden was incapable of addressing those problems, Jill Biden should be the last to complain. Who else but his wife would be most aware of the president’s obvious cognitive decline? And as the wife of a vice president for eight years, who else should know that it’s a president’s job to address problems?
In a gambit gone terribly wrong, Jill Biden and her cohorts in the Democrat Party allowed for a noticeably deteriorating man to participate in the greatest bait and switch ploy. Propping him up as the moderate alternative to an unelectable progressive like Bernie Sanders, Biden was hidden away in his basement from the American public. And as soon as he was elected, he tacked as far to the left as Bernie.
But the leader of the world’s superpower has by now exhibited enough gaffes and missteps to lose the support of the very people who handed him that nomination. A recently released New York Times/Sienna College poll showed that nearly two-thirds of Democratic voters do not want Biden to run again in 2024, and only 13% say that the US is on the right track.
The poll was released only one day after the NY Times, previously one of Biden’s biggest cheerleaders, reported that some White House staffers are questioning whether the president can handle a 2024 campaign and cited the increasing number of gaffes in his speeches and a noticeable worsening of his gait.
Were it not for the colossal consequences, one would almost feel sorry for Biden. And mockery of his condition has brought unwarranted but inadvertent derision upon the millions of people who suffer from the truly pitiable disease of dementia. But pity for a president so obviously out of his depth has placed the superpower on dangerous footing, both at home and abroad.
The severity and gravity of his ineptitude came sharply into focus in the last two weeks.
Biden’s recent getaway to the Middle East was an admitted attempt to refurbish US ties with allies in the region and prevent “a vacuum to be filled by China, Russia or Iran”. But with approval ratings hovering around 30%, the president essentially set out to refurbish his ties with the American people, gas cannister in hand. In a neighborhood where strength is the ultimate arbiter of diplomacy, he should have opted for a staycation.
Nothing conjures up weakness more than a photo-op of an American president, with the lowest approval ratings of any modern US president, shaking hands on a tarmac with an Israeli caretaker prime minister and an outgoing prime minister whose party is not even projected to pass the electoral threshold in upcoming elections. Standing next to a dethroned Bennett must have prompted Biden to be thankful for the American political structure that protects him from a similar vote of no confidence.
The Jewish State, however, has little to be thankful for. Looking for American reassurance regarding Iran, Israel received no iron-clad guarantees except for Biden’s feeble acquiescence to military force “as a last resort”. And Lapid may gush about the newly signed Jerusalem Declaration, reaffirming America’s commitment to Israel’s security, and ceremoniously hang it up in the cabinet meeting room. But that commitment seems to only be worth the paper it’s written on as Biden simultaneously insists on rejoining the JCPOA. That insistence was accompanied by a reiterated fealty to the two-state solution and new pledges of hundreds of millions of US dollars for the PA and UNWRA.
But Biden came home empty-handed too. In addition to new gaffes and blunders, the Saudis refused to turn up the oil spigot without a decision by OPEC+, which includes Russia. And the UAE even announced an intention to return their ambassador to Iran.
Worst of all, the trip itself triggered another trip - President Putin’s visit last week to Iran. It was replete with a photo-op of its own, showing Presidents Putin, Raisi and Erdogan all holding hands. And Russians and Iranians shared a signed declaration of their own, with a memorandum of understanding worth $40 billion between their countries oil and gas producers.
It was not a coincidence, and it was not encouraging. But it was to be expected. A weak president, who destabilizes his own country by crippling its energy production and generates sky high inflation by out-of-control government spending, cannot avoid having his enemies thumb their noses at him.
Biden’s policy disasters have invited contempt not only internationally but at home. And by the very people who instructed him to follow those policies. With a red wave predicted for the upcoming midterms, leftists now see him for the albatross he is and want him out of the way. In perverse political irony, they are ready to shoot the messenger carrying their own message.
As the midterm elections approach, the Biden administration must have eagerly awaited the Middle East trip, counting on spectacle abroad to distract from problems at home. Instead, it highlighted them. It also highlighted a president who has become the world’s laughingstock. And it highlighted the people who enable him, most of whom now have buyer’s remorse.
But you can only fool some of the voters some of the time. While grumbling in Nantucket, the First Lady added about the president, “He’s just had so many things thrown his way,”
No, Jill. It’s the American people who have had so many things thrown their way. And come November, hopefully they will elect representatives who will know how to handle them.
Sara Lehmann is an award-winning New York based columnist and interviewer. For more of her writings please visit saralehmann.com.
This article is reposted from Hamodia.