Tag Archives: Joe Biden

Castro launches cheap shot at Biden

You may count me as one of those Americans who gasped just a tad tonight when Julian Castro seemed to launch an ageist attack against Joe Biden.

The two men were part of a 10-candidate Democratic presidential candidate joint appearance tonight in Houston.

The former vice president, Biden, sought to make a point about “Medicare for all.” He opposes a plan pitched by opponents Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren. He said he supported a provision in the Affordable Care Act, which gave Americans a chance to “buy in” to insurance plans provided by the ACA.

Castro then launched a verbal barrage, accusing the former VP of “forgetting” what he just said. He said several times in just a few seconds that Biden “forgot” something he said only moments earlier. The audience at the Texas Southern University hall gasped audibly.

I have to say I thought the moment revealed an ugly side of the former Housing secretary and former San Antonio mayor.

Moreover, he misrepresented what Biden actually said … which makes his attack even worse.

Ageism has no place

I don’t know who won this encounter. They all seemed to score sufficient points arguing with each other at times. However, Julian Castro’s baseless barrage appears to have been the lowest point that any of the candidates suffered.

Too bad.

‘No one cares’? Yes, we do care

Ed Rendell is a fierce Democratic Party partisan and an acknowledged supporter of former Vice President Joe Biden’s campaign for the presidency of the United States.

He also is mistaken when he says “no one cares” about the gaffes that keep flying out of the former VP’s mouth on occasion.

Rendell, the former Democratic national chairman/Pennsylvania governor/Philadelphia mayor, has written that the only folks who give a hoot about Biden’s misstatements are the media and politicians. Hmm. I believe he needs to rethink that.

Rendell has written a column about it for The Hill. See it here.

I will agree with this assertion, however: Biden’s gaffes are not nearly in the same league as Donald John Trump’s continuing full frontal assault on the truth.

Biden does have this annoying tendency of mangling his facts, as he did when he sought to tell the story of a warrior who he said was awarded a Silver Star for valor. Military officials and witnesses to what Biden said occurred contend he got some of the details wrong, that he conflated events into something no one recognized. Biden stands by what he said.

Is this the same as Trump making preposterous declarations that he uses to glorify himself and inflate his role any event imaginable? Not even close, man!

Ed Rendell’s allegiance to VP Biden is understandable in this regard: They both have Pennsylvania roots, as Biden was born in Scranton, but moved to nearby Delaware as a young man and served the neighboring state in the U.S. Senate for 36 years before being elected as vice president in 2008.

However, Americans do care about Biden’s misstatements. The ex-veep needs to sharpen up his message and avoid these kinds of mistakes, which I believe he is capable of doing.

As for Trump, well … he’s a lost cause.

Obama won’t endorse in Dem primary? Smart move, Mr. President

Former President Barack H. Obama has made it clear: He will keep his hands off the 2020 Democratic presidential primary contest; there will be no endorsement coming from President No. 44.

Is that a slap in former VP Joe Biden’s face? Does that mean Obama secretly — or openly — wishes Biden wouldn’t run? No. Not in the least.

What it tells me is that the former president is keeping his options open while his fellow Democrats battle it out for the nomination and for the right to face off against Republican incumbent Donald J. Trump.

Obama is following a time-honored script. Don’t endorse in primaries; keep your cool; wait it out … and then offer your support to the nominee!

That isn’t how Donald Trump has handled a lot of down-ballot races, most notably starting with the 2018 Alabama U.S. Senate race. At first he endorsed incumbent senator, who then lost the GOP primary to that wacked-out judge, Roy Moore. Trump then endorsed Moore for election over the Democratic nominee, Doug Jones, who then defeated Moore in the 2018 general election.

Trump has gotten his finger nails dirty in other intraparty races, too.

It just isn’t customary.

Barack Obama must have a favorite or two among the Democrats seeking to run against Trump. He’s going to keep it to himself.

Can anyone blame him for wanting to keep his proverbial political powder dry? I cannot.

Trump’s lies, uh, trump Biden’s mistakes

Donald Trump is trying to make some hay over Joe Biden’s misstatements.

He said “Sleepy Joe” is not up to the job of president of the United States. The president’s surrogates, such as his daughter-in-law, Lara Trump, question Biden’s “acuity.” Trump is trying as well to turn the Democratic Party primary frontrunner into an incompetent candidate for the nation’s highest office.

May I weigh in here? No need to answer that. This is my blog and I’ll weigh in anyhow.

Donald Trump’s incessant, relentless lies suggest to me a sociopathic tendency. He lies without any care for the consequence. Sociopathic behavior, to my understanding, suggests a form of amorality … which defines Donald Trump to the letter.

I am inclined to wish that the former vice president gets himself into full campaign shape soon. He’s not there yet. The mistakes, the gaffes and the stumble-bum speechmaking open Biden up to the kind of criticism that Trump and his allies will hurl at him. What’s more, it will stick with that base of voters on whom Trump is depending.

I want to look past all this immediate stuff. I want to examine the Democratic front runner’s lengthy public service career. Has it been hiccup-free? Of course. I concede the point about the plagiarism accusation that dogged him during a 1988 presidential campaign. He tried again in 2008, only to lose the Democratic nomination to Sen. Barack Obama, who then selected him to serve as vice president.

He served for 36 years in the Senate. He chaired the Judiciary and Foreign Relations committees. He built a mountain of credibility and has forged alliances and friendships with politicians on both sides of the aisle and both ends of the spectrum.

I just want him to sharpen his message.

As for Trump, he is a lost cause. Watch any of those campaign rally riffs on which he lets loose and you get my drift. Or at least you should get it. When he’s not making an ass of himself, he is lying to our faces.

But the MAGA-philes love it. Good for them. They and their hero — Donald Trump — deserve each other.

Biden’s gaffes don’t measure up to Trump’s lies

Oh, here we go again.

Joe Biden said that the Parkland shooting survivors called him while he served as vice president of the United States.

Oops! Except that the high school massacre occurred in 2018; Biden left the vice presidency in January 2017.

The gaffes have been piling up lately. The former VP blurted out he would accept “truth over facts.” Before that he uttered something about “poor kids” doing as well academically as “white kids.”

My goodness. The gaffes reportedly have Democratic voters worried about the former vice president’s intellectual stamina were he to secure the party nomination and then face off against Donald J. Trump.

Which brings me to my point. Are the Biden gaffes as serious as the Trump lies? Hah! Not even close, man! The Trump penchant for prevarication is much, much worse than the occasional blooper that flies out of Biden’s trap.

However … we have this problem with Trump’s incessant lying. We’re getting used to it! The Trump lies — which have totaled something far north of 10,000 since he became president — are becoming part of the dialogue these days. “It’s just Trump,” some Americans are saying.

Many voters don’t seem to care that the president cannot tell the truth if his life depended on it. He lies about everything. Big things. Small things. Important matters. Trivial matters. Trump lies when the truth wouldn’t hurt him in the least. He just lies.

It’s pathological, man … which is how I believe Ben Carson, the nation’s housing secretary, described it when he and Trump were competing for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016.

If Biden manages to win the Democratic nomination, all of us — you and me — can expect the president to seek to make hay over Biden’s occasional verbal hiccups.

My question is this: Are we going to hold the president to any kind of truth-telling standard? We damn sure had better.

Say it ain’t so, Joe … please!

Joe Biden … you gotta love ‘im.

He tries to say the right thing and then he trips over his own misspeaking tongue. Such as what came out of his mouth while speaking at an Iowa political event.

“We have this notion that somehow if you’re poor, you cannot do it. Poor kids are just as bright and just as talented as white kids.”

Poor kids … white kids? What the hell?

He corrected himself immediately, but I have to say — even as someone who tends to look favorably on the former vice president of the United States, this kind of verbal clumsiness cannot stand.

I get that he paused immediately and added, “wealthy kids, black kids, Asian kids.” To be brutally honest, this is the sort of rhetorical gaffe that gets politicians into trouble — without fail.

The vice president remains the front runner for the 2020 Democratic Party presidential nomination. Democrats seem comfortable with the former VP, believing he served the nation well as President Obama’s chief executive branch deputy, not to mention the 36 years of service he turned in as a U.S. senator before becoming vice president in 2009.

C’mon, Mr. VPOTUS. You need to do better than that.

I’m just tellin’ ya.

Preferring a centrist/moderate to challenge Trump

The older I get the less radical my political thinking becomes.

I once considered myself a radical. In 1972, for instance, I got to cast my first vote for president of the United States. I voted proudly for Sen. George McGovern, who went on to lose 49 of 50 states against President Richard Nixon. It didn’t matter to me that I was backing a doomed candidate. I had just returned home from the Army, served some time in Vietnam, came home from that war wondering what in the world we were doing over there. I wanted the war to end; Sen. McGovern was going to end it.

I have learned over the years, now that I am a whole lot older, that radical politicians usually fare poorly at the ballot box.

To that end, I am leaning heavily toward a centrist/moderate Democrat to win the party’s nomination to run against Donald John Trump in November 2020.

The radical progressives running for POTUS this year tend to annoy me. I refer to the likes of Sen. Bernie Sanders, Marianne Williamson, Bill DiBlasio for starters. Of the three I just mentioned, Sanders is the most annoying of all; he sings off a single page in his political hymn book, the one titled “income inequality.”

My tendency is to lean toward someone such as Joe Biden, the former vice president. I get that he has taken a lot of fire from many of his Democratic Party primary foes. Kamala Harris, Corey Booker, DiBlasio, Julian Castro and John Delaney have unloaded on him.

A large number of other Democratic candidates are likely to fade away. I am sorry to project that one of them might be Beto O’Rourke, the Texan who once captured the country’s imagination by giving Ted Cruz a serious scare in the 2018 midterm election for the U.S. Senate.

Is the former VP the man to beat Trump? Time will have to tell on that one. He hasn’t looked like it at these two Democratic joint appearances. However, it is still early, man.

There might be another moderate to emerge. If one does come forth, I intend to give that individual a careful look.

Radicalism doesn’t sell with me. I’m too old for that these days.

Democrats need to develop their beat-Trump formula

First, I want to state the obvious, which is that I want Donald Trump removed from the presidency of the United States.

My first choice would be for him to resign, and to take Mike Pence with him into the political wilderness. My second choice would be for the House of Reps to impeach them both and then for the Senate to convict them both of high crimes and assorted misdemeanors.

My third choice, and the one that makes the most sense, is for the Trump-Pence ticket to get drummed out of office on Election Day, 2020.

Will that third option come true? Not based on what many millions of us have witnessed in the first two rounds of Democratic Party presidential primary debates.

I heard the term “circular firing squad” after the Wednesday night encounter. The Man in the Middle was the former vice president, Joseph R. Biden Jr., the clear frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination … at least for the moment.

None of the candidates running for the nomination seem able to combat Donald Trump, the gut-fighter Republican incumbent who might be poised to insult his way to re-election.

Trump will not invoke a clear and grand vision for the future. He won’t offer a second-term agenda, because he doesn’t have one. He won’t appeal to our better angels by telling us the “best is yet to come.” He’s going to attach hideous nicknames on whomever the Democrats nominate for president and vice president and is going to toss out innuendo after ghastly innuendo at them.

What are Democrats doing to prepare for that? They’re beating the hell out of each other, notably former VP Biden. As for the ex-veep, he needs to find a formula to counter those attacks and to turn his sights directly — and with extreme focus and prejudice — on Donald Trump.

Is he capable of doing so? I do not know at this moment. Is there another in that huge field of Democrats ready to assume the frontrunner’s mantle and then take the fight directly to the carnival barker/con man in chief? Hah!

That’s the bad news. I have some good news to pass along.

We’re still very early in this nominating process. A lot can happen. It probably will. That huge field of candidates will start to thin out soon. Then we’ll get to the serious contenders and weed out more of the pretenders along the way.

However, at this moment I am not feeling good about what might be waiting for us down the road.

Et tu, Fox News Channel?

You can quibble till the paint dries about the quality of Fox News Channel’s political coverage. I do on occasion. The network that calls itself “fair and balance” is neither of those things.

However, news hands at FNC are capable of doing good work. They conduct public opinion polling on occasion that raises an eyebrow or two, such as a recent poll showing how Donald Trump matches up against his Democratic opponents.

The most recent Fox poll shows the president, for instance, trailing former Vice President Joe Biden by a margin well outside the margin of error.

The president’s response? He went after the “friendly” network, suggesting it has gone to the dark side by casting him in a negative light. The poll has him “losing big to Sleepy Joe,” Trump said on Twitter.

Good grief, dude. Take a rest from the Twitter machine. I mean, you’ve got important work to do. You are seeking to make America great again, isn’t that right, Mr. President? These constant Twitter tirades make America laughable.

As for what the polls are saying more than a year away from the next election, I’ll answer with two words: President Dukakis.

In 1988, polling had the Democratic presidential nominee Michael Dukakis about 17 points ahead of Vice President George H.W. Bush heading into that year’s election campaign season. The election, um, didn’t turn out that way … you know?

Don’t misunderstand me. I do not want Trump to turn those polls around. If anything, I hope whoever he faces next fall widens the gap and trounces the incumbent badly. He needs to back to … wherever.

So, the president needs to chill out. Get to work. Quit busying yourself with idiotic tweets and assorted blathering about polls with which you disagree.

Sen. Cruz: 2020 election a ‘toss-up’

So now it’s U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz weighing in on Donald J. Trump’s re-election chances. Has the Cruz Missile discovered something the rest of us don’t know? No. But he’s blathering anyway.

Cruz appeared on PBS’s “Firing Line” and told the host, Margaret Hoover, that the president “absolutely” could lose his re-election bid. Well, duh! Do ya think?

Cruz also said he doesn’t believe Democrats will nominate a centrist, such as, say, former Vice President Joe Biden. They will nominate a lefty in the mold of Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Sen. Kamala Harris or Sen. Bernie Sanders. He said the far left of the party is calling the shots and will turn away from a candidate deemed to be too, oh, “moderate.”

He also believes the left is so enraged at Trump’s presidency that they’ll turn out in staggering numbers.

None of this is really a big-time flash. Cruz well might be correct that Trump’s chances are a big dicey at the moment. However, we’re talking about the here and now. The future could reveal something quite different.

It pains me terribly to acknowledge this, but Donald Trump was considered a joke when he announced his candidacy prior to the 2016 Republican primary season. Then he knocked off all those challengers one by one; Sen. Cruz was one of them.

Then he got nominated and ran against Hillary Rodham Clinton, a candidate perceived to be infinitely more qualified. Then all hell broke loose. Hillary lost to The Donald.

Ted Cruz’s prognostication today, therefore, means next to nothing.

Still, it is a bit scintillating to ponder that a former Trump antagonist who’s turned into one of the president’s most ardent allies would consider the POTUS to be in some jeopardy.

If only …