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New York Times Columnists Turn On Biden After Disastrous Debate Performance

  Columnists at The New York Times overwhelmingly turned on President Joe Biden following his disastrous performance during the first presid...

 Columnists at The New York Times overwhelmingly turned on President Joe Biden following his disastrous performance during the first presidential debate on Thursday night.

The two-hour event on CNN was filled with moments of Biden losing his train of thought, freezing on live television, slurring his words, and making incoherent remarks to the point where former President Donald Trump quipped that Biden didn’t even know what he had said.

Reaction was overwhelmingly negative for Biden on television and social media. He did not do any better when it came to print journalism as not a single opinion writer at The New York Times said Biden won the debate.

The newspaper asked 12 of its columnists and contributors to assess who won the debate. Ten said that Trump won, while the remaining two said that it was a “draw” and no one won.

The Times’ op-ed section was littered with anti-Biden pieces following the debate.

Columnist Thomas L. Friedman said that it made him “weep” and was the most “heartbreaking moment in American presidential campaign politics in my lifetime — precisely because of what it revealed: Joe Biden, a good man and a good president, has no business running for re-election.”

“To give America the greatest shot possible of deterring the Trump threat in November, the president has to come forward and declare that he will not be running for re-election and is releasing all of his delegates for the Democratic National Convention,” he continued. “If Vice President Kamala Harris wants to compete, she should. But voters deserve an open process in search of a Democratic presidential nominee who can unite not only the party but the country.”

He said that Biden was “clearly” not able to be president “any longer” and that his family and staff should have stopped him.

“If he insists on running and he loses to Trump, Biden and his family — and his staff and party members who enabled him — will not be able to show their faces,” he concluded.

Columnist Frank Bruni wrote that Biden was simply “not capable” of even winning the debate because he had been so greatly diminished.

“From the moment the debate began, he seemed unsteady. Off. His expression was often frozen,” he wrote. “His voice was often flat. He garbled words. He corrected himself midsentence, over and over again. He’d clearly memorized key talking points — key phrases — but he repeatedly used them without providing adequate context, swerved from one to another without any transition, halted sentences before they reached their destination, started sentences without giving them any bearings.”

Bruni said that “significant” damage was done to Biden’s re-election chances. “For most of the mere 90 minutes of the debate, Biden seemed to be grasping for something he couldn’t reach,” he concluded. “I fear that’s a metaphor. I’m sure it’s a warning.”

Opinion editor Patrick Healy said that every Democrat he heard from said, “This is a disaster.”

“By the end of the debate, I was hearing a level of anxiety and alarm from those Democrats and several other party leaders and operatives that I’d never seen in 20 years of covering presidential politics,” he wrote. “The discussion turned squarely to the need for the Democratic Party to replace Biden as the 2024 nominee, with four months to go to the election, and how to make that happen.”

Columnist Nicholas Kristof bluntly wrote: “I hope he reviews his debate performance Thursday evening and withdraws from the race, throwing the choice of a Democratic nominee to the convention in August.”

“This will be a wrenching choice,” he concluded. “But, Mr. President, one way you can serve your country in 2024 is by announcing your retirement and calling on delegates to replace you, for that is the safest course for our nation.”

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