Special counsel says Biden is 'elderly man with a poor memory.' And he's the Democrats' guy?

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The clear evidence of mishandling classified documents is embarrassing enough. But there’s something even more damning to President Joe Biden in special counsel Robert Hur’s new report released Thursday.

It’s this: “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.”

Ouch. It sounds like how you might refer to your grandpa at the nursing home.

For Biden’s already tenuous standing in the polls, this will not be helpful in convincing an already doubtful public that the 81-year-old is still up to the task of president – let alone for four more years.

President Joe Biden walks towards to the Marine One prior to a South Lawn departure from the White House on February 7, 2024 in Washington, DC.
President Joe Biden walks towards to the Marine One prior to a South Lawn departure from the White House on February 7, 2024 in Washington, DC.

It seems Hur and his investigators in part declined to prosecute Biden because of his lack of mental fitness. The president has been under investigation for the past year, after classified documents were discovered at his home and office.

Biden’s wrongdoing is clear and presented “serious risks to national security.”

“Our investigation uncovered evidence that President Biden willfully retained and disclosed classified materials after his vice presidency when he was a private citizen,” the report says.

Biden's memory is 'significantly limited'

Yet the Justice Department will not bring criminal charges against the president.

Investigators found "Biden's memory was significantly limited" during interviews last year with the special counsel and in a recorded conversation with a ghostwriter in 2017.

And the special counsel says the president’s memory was “worse” in 2023 than it was during the interview in 2017.

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Even more troubling, the report states: “He did not remember when he was vice president, forgetting on the first day of the interview when his term ended ('if it was 2013 – when did I stop being Vice President?'), and forgetting on the second day of the interview when his term began ('in 2009, am I still Vice President?')."

Even more sad, the report states: “He did not remember, even within several years, when his son Beau died.”

That does not sound like someone capable of executing one of the world’s most important jobs.

Biden’s handlers are obviously not thrilled with the details included in the report and are pushing back against the allegations, saying that “such comments have no place in a Department of Justice report.”

Shouldn't voters know Biden's mental state?

I’m guessing that many mainstream media headlines will gloss over these shocking allegations and focus on the fact that Hur chose not to pursue criminal charges.

While the report is no doubt humiliating to Biden and his family, this is very pertinent information that the American people should be aware of – just months ahead of the 2024 election.

Biden is a four-alarm fire: Earth to Democrats: Biden presidency is a dumpster fire. How many warning signs do you need?

And it’s not like the details in this report come out of nowhere. Anytime Biden gives a speech in public or at a news conference, it’s obvious he’s struggling. And he’s only getting worse.

Democrats should be ashamed of themselves for trying to convince anyone that this man is capable of continuing as president.

Of course, it looks like Republicans are refusing to offer a better alternative. Former President Donald Trump, the likely GOP nominee, has his own enormous problems.

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The same day the report on Biden came out, the U.S. Supreme Court heard a case out of Colorado that seeks to keep Trump off the ballot because of his actions on Jan. 6, 2021.

Trump faces four criminal cases (including one in regard to his own handling of classified documents) and dozens of felony charges, and he’s just a few years shy of 80 himself.

As a wise colleague of mine put it, “So, this is America in 2024: the elderly man with a poor memory vs. the elderly man facing felony convictions competing to become leader of the free world.”

How can this be our reality?

Ingrid Jacques is a columnist at USA TODAY. Contact her at ijacques@usatoday.com or on X, formerly Twitter: @Ingrid_Jacques

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Biden, 'elderly man with poor memory,' wants to be president – again