Well, we are at the point already in the 2024 presidential campaign cycle that a few brave souls in the mainstream media are dipping their toes into the Joe Biden age/cognitive abilities question well and are starting to ask his Democrat allies whether they think Biden, who is 80, is fit enough for another four years in office.
Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) was the lucky recipient of one of these questions courtesy of NBC News of all places, which interviewed Tester ahead of what’s expected to be an uphill reelection campaign for him headed into a presidential election year.
The answer they posted in the story on their website was fairly straightforward and milquetoast:
Asked whether he had concerns about President Joe Biden’s age, Tester said he believed Biden, 80, is “absolutely 100% with it.”
“He’s doing a good job. I think folks are making a bigger deal out of it than it is,” Tester said. “But, you know, we’ll see what I’m like at 82. I doubt I’ll be running for president.”
But Tester’s full answer, which was shown on the network, was not the win he thought it was (bolded emphasis added):
“Joe Biden, when I’ve been around him – and it’s not every day – but when I’ve been around him, when I’ve seen him on the news, he’s absolutely 100 percent with it. And, uh, uh, he’s got his — recall, his … cognitive ability, whatever you want to call it – I’m not a doc, I’m a dairy farmer, but he’s fine and he’s doing a good job. I think folks are making a bigger deal out of it than it is.”
Democrat Senator Jon Tester claims Biden is “absolutely 100% with it.”
“He’s got his recall, his cognitive ability…” pic.twitter.com/IbWAtJg8el
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) August 17, 2023
“When I’ve been around him, and it’s not every day”? That’s one of the biggest “outs” I’ve ever seen in politics and I’ve heard a lot of them over my decades paying attention to what politicians say and how they operate.
In other words, Tester knows otherwise and is trying to give himself an out for when his potential general election rivals start hitting him over his defenses of Joe Biden on this issue, which are pretty incredible considering Joe Biden’s bumbles and stumbles have been obvious since well before he took office, to the point that it was Democrats and certain media figures who actually first raised questions about his cognitive fitness and age in 2019.
When I watched the video, my first thought was that Republicans are likely to turn around and use Tester’s remarks against him, and that’s exactly what happened, as shown in the below NRSC clip, which focused on how Tester’s claim was highly questionable more so than the fact that he was giving himself an out:
Jon Tester: Joe Biden is “absolutely 100% with it… He’s doing a good job. I think folks are making a bigger deal out of it than it is.”
— Senate Republicans (@NRSC) August 17, 2023
The clip has also been shared by Tim Sheehy who is vying for the chance to be Tester’s GOP opponent in the 2024 fall election.
“WOW. After all his failures, corruption, America last policies, and inability to put two sentences together, Jon Tester still thinks President Biden is doing ‘a good job’ and ‘absolutely 100% with it,” Sheehy tweeted.
“It’s time we get rid of both of them.”
As has often been said before, the tape doesn’t lie, and that is definitely true when it comes to Joe Biden and the absurd claim that “he’s fine” and “he’s absolutely 100 percent with it.” If conservative voters in the very red, pro-Trump state of Montana are just as sick of having their intelligence insulted as the rest of us in other states are, Tester may find that his fourth run for Senate will be anything but “fine” next year.