OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
Many people believe that Joe Biden has been showing signs of cognitive decline for some time and he did not do himself any favors in dispelling those rumors recently.
He made his way to Louisiana on Friday to tour the damage done by Hurricane Ida and he made news when he brought some help along with him, The New York Post reported.
After Air Force One touched down in New Orleans, Biden received a briefing on recovery efforts and inspected wreckage in the western suburbs of Reserve and LaPlace
The tarmac welcome party at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport included Democratic Gov. John Edwards and Republican Sens. Bill Cassidy and John Kennedy.
House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) and New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell, a Democrat, also welcomed Biden.
But it was what was noticed next that had The Post, and others, in a state of disbelief.
“Biden walked to the Marine One helicopter with a cheat sheet of officials’ names and photos, including those of Cantrell and Jefferson Parish President Cynthia Lee Sheng sticking out of his pants pocket. He also appeared to have a script in his pocket,” The Post said.
Biden was absolutely hammered for it, Fox News reported.
“Can Joe Biden do anything without a cheat sheet? He couldn’t give a speech on Afghanistan after 5 PM,” Lisa Boothe, a Fox News contributor, said. “It’s abundantly clear he’s not operating on full cylinders. He should be in retirement, not leading a country. It’s time we start talking about it more. Everyone sees it.”
“President Trump certainly never carried a ‘cheat sheet’ with him,” Kayleigh McEnany, who served as President Donald Trump’s press secretary, said. “As any good staff would, we often provided him with a pocket card before he left the plane, but he usually just left it on Air Force 1 and definitely never relied on it to remember the names of those he was meeting on the tarmac.”
“Given his track record of hiding in his basement during the presidential election, it’s not surprising that President Biden depends on cheat sheets,” Deneen Borelli, another Fox News contributor, said. “Biden is lost and fumbles badly without notes and the teleprompter. It’s fundamentally dangerous the U.S. has such a weak and incompetent president. The world is watching including our adversaries.
“Then-candidate Biden wasn’t challenged by the media and when interviewed was given softball questions. Now America knows why his handlers want him to have limited media access because he’s incapable of sensible communication,” he said.
Biden did go on to talk about the storm damage and managed to fit in his campaign slogan “build back better.”
“My message today is, I think what we’re all seeing — and I’m getting the same response from my Republican friends here that are in the Congress — is there’s nothing political about this. This is simply about saving lives, getting people back up and running. And we’re in this together,” Biden said.
“I promise we’re gonna have your back until this thing gets done. And so, I’m mainly here to listen to see what’s on your mind,” he said.
But would he be the career politician that he is if he did not use a tragedy to promote his own goals, like passing his infrastructure plan?
“I walk through the backyards here — so many telephone lines are down, so many telephone poles are down, so many of the — of the way in which we transmit energy is lost because of the old wooden telephone pole,” he said.
“We know for a fact if they’re underground they are secure. It costs more money. We’ve got to not just build back to what it was with the same old poles up. We got to build back better. We got to build back more resiliently,” he said.
He has a point, but some may argue that the responsibility of doing that should be on the utility companies that rake in billions of dollars and not on the taxpayers.