You have to love the efforts by some Republicans to paint President Joe Biden as cognitively impaired. This from the folks who believe that the former president was a genius even as he wondered aloud at a COVID-19 briefing if injecting or drinking disinfectants might be worth investigating. Makes you wonder who has cognitive deficits, doesn’t it?
Who is more confused, the president who told us that COVID-19 would “magically go away” before the virus killed over half a million Americans or the president who organized 220 million vaccinations in his first 100 days?
Biden’s policies during his first 100 days in office have received high marks from the American public. According to a CBS News poll, “Eighty-five percent of Americans who watched Mr. Biden’s speech to Congress last week … overwhelmingly” approved of his message. Among other things, Biden outlined plans to expand preschool opportunities for our nation’s children. Republicans call this socialism while most Americans call it an important investment in our children and our nation’s future.
Biden’s plans are popular, so Republicans are making up issues to distract their supporters. For example, John Roberts of Fox News and other right-wing media outlets made the claim that Biden’s climate change policy included restricting red meat consumption (it does not). Roberts reported that “Biden’s climate agenda” would require us to “cut 90% of red meat from our diet, max 4 lbs. per year, one burger per month.” In fact, Biden’s plan does not even mention meat consumption.
Roberts was forced to retract the misstatement on the air. “A graphic and the script incorrectly implied” that a study about meat-eating and greenhouse gas emissions was “part of Biden’s plan for dealing with climate change. That is not the case,” Roberts told Fox viewers. You have to admire the part where Roberts said that the false information was “implied.” Sounded pretty explicit to me.
So who is confused?
Larry Kudlow, Donald Trump’s top economic adviser, announced to Fox News listeners that President Biden’s efforts to address global warming will force Americans to drink “plant-based beer.” Twitter followers had fun explaining to Kudlow that beer is already plant-based—made from grains, hops and yeast. Kudlow also declared last year that COVID-19 was “contained close to airtight” before it killed more than 500,000 Americans. Perhaps we should discuss Kudlow’s age and cognitive decline, instead, or has he always been this clueless?
During an October 2020 presidential debate and throughout the presidential campaign, the former president warned that if Biden were elected, “you will have a recession, the likes of which you’ve never seen. Your 401K’s will go to hell and it’ll be a very, very sad day for this country.” The Dow Jones closed at 30,814 points on Jan. 19, Trump’s last full day in office. One hundred days later on April 29, the Dow Jones closed at 34,060 points, a 10.5 percent increase in 100 days. Not bad for a “low-energy” guy. Also, while Trump had a negative net job growth after four years in office, Biden scored near record-breaking job growth in his first three-months on the job, according to the Labor Department.
Does anything Trump predicts ever come true? Yet, his supporters still believe.
How cognitively impaired do you have to be to believe that you won a presidential election after losing both the popular vote and the electoral college? The outcome was upheld by Trump’s Justice Department, Trump’s Supreme Court, Republican governors and election officials in swing states, and by numerous state courts. Yet, a recent CNN poll shows that 70 percent of Republicans think that Trump won.
So who is confused?
At the end of the day, one has to wonder who is more impaired: The con man or those who continue to fall for the con man’s cons? In a recent example, Trump told his supporters to boycott Coke because the company objected to new voter suppression laws being passed by Republicans. However, Nathaniel Meyersohn, writing for CNN Business, reported on April 19 that he had called several Trump resorts to ask and found that they were all still serving Coke, Trump’s favorite drink.
Do as I say, not as I do? Memory problems or just the behavior of a con man still pulling the wool over his followers? Hard to tell with this one. So many issues.
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Tom Zirpoli is the program coordinator of the Human Services Management graduate program at McDaniel College. He writes from Westminster. His column appears on Wednesdays. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.