Updated February 27th, 2024 at 12:32 IST

Biden Turns the Tables on Trump over Memory Lapses, Gaffes: ‘Other Guy About as Old as I Am’

When informed that the polls show voters consider his ‘age' as a major drawback, Biden joked that it is a “classified information.”

Reported by: Digital Desk
Former US President Donald Trump and sitting US President Joe Biden. | Image:AP
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US President Joe Biden on Monday turned the tables about the instances of his memory lapses and verbal gaffes onto his predecessor former President Donald Trump saying that the 2024 race isn’t about how old the candidates are. In a televised interview the aired on Feb.26, Biden, when asked about the serious growing concerns about his old age and the subsequently his cognitive wellbeing, argued that GOP frontrunner Trump had “his own struggles” with memory.

When informed that the polls show voters consider his ‘age' as a major drawback, Biden joked that it is a “classified information.” Biden was told that he is “currently 81 years old,” the oldest president to serve in the American history who has had his share of mix-ups often attracting backlash and withering popular support from his backers. “Who the hell told you that?” the sitting  US president asked. “That’s classified!” he joked.

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Biden went on to claim that Trump, 77, was just as old as he is. “You got to take the other guy,” he told his host in an appearance on “Late Night With Seth Meyers” on NBC. The Democrat President mentioned Trump’s recent gaffe where the Republican frontrunner appeared to forget his wife, the former First Lady, Melania Trump’s name. “He [Trump] is about as old as I am, but he can’t remember his wife’s name,” replied Biden. The latter reminded that the contest was about policies more than just how old those contesting are. “It’s about how old your ideas are,” he argued.

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The US President continued, “Look, this is a guy who wants to take us back. He wants to take us back on Roe v. Wade. He wants to take us back on a whole range of issues that are — 50 to 60 years, they’ve been solid American positions.”

Biden was more officially pronounced as a “well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory” in the Special Council Robert Hur’s report that delved into his handling of classified documents discovered by the FBI in his home at Delaware. Our declined to bring charges against Biden saying, “We have also considered that. At trial, Mr. Biden would likely present himself to a jury, as he did during our interview of him, as a sympathetic, well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory.” Hur added that the US President "did not remember, even within several years, when his son Beau died.”

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At an impromptu White House press conference, Biden hit back at Special Council, saying “How in the hell dare he raise that?” He elaborated, “Frankly, when I was asked the question, I thought to myself, it wasn’t any of their damn business.” At least two sources familiar with Biden’s five-hour interview over two days said that it was, in fact, the US President and not Our who first introduced the topic of his son Beau’s death. Biden was questioned about his workflow at a Virginia rental home from 2016 to 2018 when wrapped the conversation around his son’s death with a ghost writer who was, at the time, helping him write a memoir.

Biden lost his son to brain cancer in 2015 but the 46th President has, many a times, strangely hurled claims that his son died fighting a war in Iraq. “My son was a major in the US Army. We lost him in Iraq,” Biden told the troops in Iwakuni on one occasion, prompting questions on the legitimacy of his error-prone remark. His son passed at the Walter Reed military hospital in Maryland. Biden later walked back on his statement saying, “I’m thinking about Iraq because that’s where my son died,” during a speech in Florida.

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Biden’s age has been a campaign point for Republicans even though Trump trails in age behind him by just three years at 77. The Special Council, tough, revealed that Biden was unable to recall key dates of his Vice Presidency.

US President, in his defensive, cited Trump’s speech at Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Maryland where the latter mistakenly called his wife Melani ‘Mercedes.’ “Oh, look at that, Mercedes — that’s pretty good,” Trump said about the former First Lady. The MAGA supporters, in turn, argued that Trump was referring to Mercedes Schlapp, a former White House adviser whose partner Matt Schlapp, the chairman of the American Conservative Union, hosted the conference but that the clip was “taken out of context.”

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Published February 27th, 2024 at 12:32 IST