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Assault on America, Day 253: Joe Biden, his stamina, smarts & sanity under scrutiny tonight

Dem Debate lineup
Joe Biden is the incredible shrinking man.

Keep this in mind as you (or if you) watch tonight’s three-hour Democrat candidates’ marathon debate in Houston, Texas (hosted by ABC News and Univision and moderated by Linsey Davis, David Muir, Jorge Ramos, and the always good-for-laugh George Stephanopoulos). While it’s true that Biden’s polling lead remains substantial and there’s still four and a half months remaining until the first official ballots are cast in the likely-to-be-frozen landscape of Iowa, the former vice president is facing somewhat of a do-or-die scenario in this event.

Biden must demonstrate he can put two or more sentences together without lying, gaffing or stumbling -- no easy task for the scruples-challenged 76-year-old.

Equally hard to fathom is how it’s been a month and a half since the last Democrat “debate(s)” and not much has effectively changed -- though the dynamic is decidedly different. In the time since (almost) all of the liberal dreamers gathered in Detroit on the final two nights of July, a few have left the race, several more are seemingly teetering on the edge of existence and Biden’s once solid foundation has been eaten away by gaffes and unforced errors of his own doing.

Biden’s excessively toothy grinning mug reminds me a little of the old Jim Carey character “Fire Marshall Bill” on the show “In Living Color”. (Note: In fairness, someone made the same observation years ago, so apparently I’m not the only one.) Everywhere Joe goes he seemingly means well yet can’t stop setting things on fire as he provides tips on how to prevent conflagrations in American politics.

At any rate, Biden will (literally) be at center stage tonight taking on all comers and likely be on the defensive the entire evening. Patrick J. Buchanan observed last week at The American Conservative, “Biden’s crowds are anemic compared to Warren’s. His speeches range from the unexciting to the boring. He has no enticing policy agenda, no inspiring message, no captivating slogan. As a political athlete, he is not even in the same league as Obama or JFK.

“He does not excite the Democratic youth. And if he won in 2020, he would be, at 78, our oldest president. Jill Biden, his wife, made the case for Joe well: ‘You may like another candidate better, but you have to look at who’s going to win… Joe is that person.’...

“Does the Joe Biden of the summer of 2019 look like he could be, a decade from now, the dynamic leader America could rely on to face down the successors to China’s Xi Jinping and Russia’s Vladimir Putin? Prediction: At some point in this campaign, Joe Biden will declare that, if elected, he will only serve one term.”

Who knows, Biden may be physically capable of only serving one term (if even that). It was widely reported how Biden’s eye filled with blood last week during his turn on the CNN “climate change” stage, raising new concerns about his age and state of health as he limped towards Texas and tonight’s nationally televised event. Uncle Joe apparently hasn’t released his medical records in eleven years, generating fears he might be hiding something.

Then-candidate Donald Trump was happy to circulate his doctor’s opinions of his wellbeing in the midst of the 2016 campaign, outwardly proud of his squeaky clean bill of health despite his rather unusual one-yuuuggee-meal-a-day eating habits and proclivity towards staying up all night. Trump boasted that he’s never required much sleep and his overnight tweeting practices certainly haven’t eased any since he’s occupied the White House living quarters. Not bad for a workaholic in his early seventies who seemingly never runs out of energy or enthusiasm for making America great again.

And it’s curious how Democrats won’t be making Trump’s age an issue because the top three contenders (Biden, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth “Pocahontas” Warren) are all either around the same age as the president or several years his senior.

In stark contrast to Trump, Biden often appears tired and edgy even while desperately attempting to maintain his upbeat good-guy reputation -- you know, the one where he massages women’s shoulders and sniffs their hair while whispering sweet nothings in their ears. Joe’s such a great guy -- he’s even acquired the well-earned nickname of “creepy Joe.” If Biden continues leading the other Democrats by double-digits late in the year, look for more of these types of health accusations and “creepy” insinuations to bubble to the surface.

If Biden’s closest pursuers don’t do it, President Trump definitely will. Hillary Clinton’s shaky fitness was a major issue in the 2016 campaign -- who’s to say Biden would be immune from the same treatment? Why won’t you just turn loose your records, Joe? What are you hiding? Haven’t Democrats claimed ad nauseum that Trump is concealing something sinister by withholding his tax returns?

Besides Biden and his rapidly accumulating dilemmas, tonight’s program will likely once again center on the established themes in the campaign thus far, namely Trump, Trump and Trump. Mixed in will be plenty of grandstanding over healthcare, “climate change”, immigration and a smattering of foreign policy. And abortion -- don’t leave out how oppressed women supposedly are in Trump’s America, being forced to carry infants to term and in the alternative, being forbidden from snuffing them out even after birth.

They’ll puff out their chests and drone on about how the healthy economy -- with nearly full employment -- is only benefitting the “rich” while the bottom rungs on the income ladder are eking out a sorry existence by holding down two or three jobs and scraping by while Trump and his fat cat wealthy capitalist friends bathe in their salty tears.

Or something like that. After a while it all sounds the same, like white noise propagated to lull you to sleep. Real life statistics and common sense refutes practically everything the Democrats say, but what does it matter to them? Appearances are everything to this clique of ambitious politicians who depend on duping the public into believing every “deplorables” Trump supporter is racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, etc.

It’s all an illusion, but if Democrats told the truth, what fun would that be?

It will be the first time this cycle all of the top party competitors are on stage at the same time, with Biden sandwiched between ultra-leftists Sanders and Warren, both of whom will hope to make sufficient “You’re too moderate and wimpy!” digs to continue to nudge into Biden’s lead. The rest of the qualifying candidates simply hope to keep polling well-enough to make the October debate stage -- and therefore extend their moments in the spotlight.

The race has reached a juncture where voters are perhaps paying a little closer attention to what the candidates actually stand for. The “other” Democrats in tonight’s debate are Sen. Cory Booker, South Bend Indiana “Mayor Pete” Buttigieg, former Obama HUD Secretary Julián Castro, Sen. Kamala Harris, Sen. Amy Klobuchar, former Rep. “Beto” O’Rourke and Businessman Andrew Yang.

Harris will be to Warren’s left (on stage at least). The California senator will no doubt try to create another “I was that girl” moment to get people talking about her again, since it’s been over two long months since she embarrassed Biden in the first round of debates (in Miami). Kamala must be ecstatic that Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard failed to satisfy the DNC’s criteria for inclusion in this event, lest the lower ranked House member once again bring up her pathetic and hypocritical record as Attorney General of the Golden State.

“I am Spartacus” Booker uttered several catchy lines in the late July forums (while standing right next to Biden), but it didn’t result in boosting his poll standings. He’ll be positioned to Sanders’ right, between Buttigieg and the virtually invisible Sen. Amy Klobuchar. The Minnesota senator and Castro are currently registering around one percent in the national polls, which makes you wonder how/why they made it to tonight’s program.

But the Democrats would look stupid if only a half dozen or so candidates registered necessary support to qualify for their party get-togethers. There’s strength in numbers -- or at least it’s true if there are quality candidates to put before the public. Judging by the fact bumbling Biden’s led from the beginning, there’s a serious talent gap in Democrat-land.

The non-top tier candidates are mere window dressing, there to make the polling leaders look better and the race more competitive. Plus, can you imagine what it’d be like to ask Biden, Sanders, Warren and Harris to fill three hours’ worth of airtime talking about racism, sexism, socialism, abortion, gay rights, global warming, gun confiscation, hate crimes, amnesty, taxing the rich and weakening the military? Oh yes, with plenty of “Orange Man Bad!” pontificating thrown in to make themselves sound smart and well-informed.

Those days are still far off -- at least until next spring. It’s hard to imagine most of the current field hanging on much past New Hampshire and South Carolina, though there certainly will be some hoping to catch fire on Super Tuesday (March 3rd).

Time, circumstances, current events -- and age and physical stamina -- will ultimately determine who makes it past the preliminary rounds. For tonight it’s all about Joe Biden and whether he can hold up while sounding coherent for hours at a time, no easy task even for someone as practiced at lying and bloviating as Uncle Joe is.

Americans will be watching closely as the somewhat winnowed Democrat field gathers tonight in Houston for their third debate of the 2020 nominating cycle. After the program we’ll know a lot more about Joe Biden and his ability to sustain himself for the long haul -- of if he’ll merely reprise his role as the incredible shrinking man.

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