Multiple media outlets criticized former Vice President Joe Biden for his poor performance during Wednesday’s fifth democratic debate.
Biden struggled even before the debate began, with his campaign accidentally sending out its post-debate email hours before the event began. They sent a subsequent email apologizing for pulling the trigger and asking for money. Biden then made multiple errors, outlets pointed out.
CNN editor-at-large Chris Cillizza gave out the night’s winner and loser awards in a round-up Thursday morning, and Biden was first on the list of losers. Cillizza started by pointing out that despite a “softball” first question, Biden’s “opening answer was shaaaaaky.”
The former vice president “found his footing” towards the middle of the debate but began to stumble again, according to Cillizza.
“And Biden committed something he is known for: An unforced error,” the round-up reads. “In talking about domestic violence, he said that people have to just keep “punching” at the problem. I know what he meant. But that was definitely a poor choice of words. And then another: He said he had the support of the only black woman elected to the Senate. Except that he forgot that [California Sen. Kamala] Harris was on the stage.”
MSNBC pundit Lawrence O’Donnell pointed out this “colossal gaffe” during Wednesday’s post-debate analysis, too.
“Former Vice President Joe Biden found his performance in the November Democratic debate mocked from by former Obama adviser, who described the presidential hopeful as ‘Mr. Magooing his way through this,’” O’Donnell said.
The Hill did a takeaway post following the debate, writing Thursday that Biden continued his theme of “shaky performances” in debates.
“He failed to impress again on Wednesday night,” according to The Hill. “His first answer meandered and then, after seeming to find his composure for a while, he stumbled again in the debate’s second half.”
This article, like others, picked on Biden’s continuing theme of gaffes. Like CNN, it also pointed out his “propensity for clumsy phrasing,” noting the moment when he said he comes “out of the black community” and when he suggested America should combat domestic violence by “punching at it.”
The New Yorker also headlined Biden’s performance, “Joe Biden Stumbles Again on Race at the Fifth Democratic Debate” Thursday. This outlet pointed out the moment when New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker criticized Biden for saying he is against legalizing marijuana on the federal level.”
“I thought you might have been high when you said it,” Booker said. “Marijuana in our country is already legal for privileged people.”
This is when Biden made his “black community” comment.
“This kind of flub—where, even if the meaning is somewhat clear, it’s impossible to excuse what he actually said—has happened to Biden before,” according to the article. “These statements are part of why people have wondered about Biden’s ability to hold on to support from any group of voters. Taken together, they are the kind of public show of political weakness that a primary process is set up to weed out.”
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