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Biden Struggling to Function During Closed-Door Meetings: Report

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


President Joe Biden reportedly faces considerable challenges in closed-door meetings with U.S. officials and lawmakers, to the extent that there are questions about his level of alertness and coherence.

The Wall Street Journal conducted interviews with numerous individuals — both Republicans and Democrats, including insiders at the White House — for its report and discovered that many expressed significant worries about Biden’s mental suitability for his role. Their concerns align with those of a vast majority of voters as the upcoming election approaches, after years of Biden committing grave mental lapses, ranging from forgetting the timeline of his tenure in office to asserting that he had recently met with individuals who had been deceased for years.

The report comes after Special Counsel Robert Hur decided that he could not bring criminal charges against Biden for mishandling classified material because he did not believe that Biden would be viewed as fit to stand trial. Hur’s description of Biden left Republicans wondering how it is possible that Biden isn’t fit to stand trial but he is supposedly fit to run for reelection.

The administration responded to the story by asserting that most of the claims were false or by attempting to reframe Biden’s statements and actions in a positive light, despite widespread perception to the contrary. Other Democrats defended Biden by attributing his perceived mental decline to a “speech impediment” issue.

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The WSJ report said that during a meeting earlier this year about providing funding to Ukraine, Biden reportedly “paused for extended periods and sometimes closed his eyes for so long that some in the room wondered whether he had tuned out.”

He devoted considerable time attempting to persuade lawmakers of the necessity of the funding, despite the fact that those in attendance were already convinced of its importance. Throughout the meeting, Biden spoke very little — frequently deferring to his staff — and when he did speak, attendees struggled to hear him, according to the report.

“You couldn’t be there and not feel uncomfortable,” one attendee told the WSJ. “I’ll just say that.” And Sen. James E. Risch (R-ID) said that when dealing with Biden behind closed doors, “What you see on TV is what you get.”

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“These people who keep talking about what a dynamo he is behind closed doors—they need to get him out from behind closed doors, because I didn’t see it,” he said.

In a one-on-one call the following month with Republican House Speaker Mike Johnson, as reported by the WSJ, Biden mentioned that a recent policy change by his administration that put some major energy projects at risk was just a study. However, Biden actually signed an executive order halting Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) exports to other countries, which Johnson argued would hurt the U.S. economy. The exchange led the speaker to be concerned that Biden might have forgotten about his own policy, according to sources cited by the Journal.

Meanwhile, the White House is pushing back hard on the WSJ report.

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“It’s a little surprising that The Wall Street Journal thought it was breaking news when congressional Republicans told them the same false claims they’ve spouted on Fox News for years, but it’s also telling that the only individuals willing to smear the President in this story are political opponents afraid to use their names — plus one proven liar,” White House senior deputy press secretary Andrew Bates said in a statement to NewsNation.

But the WSJ told The Hill the outlet stands by its reporting.

According to Fox News, voters support former President Trump for handling the economy and securing the border while considering him more physically and mentally fit than Biden. The Network added that “Biden leads Trump on handling abortion rights and protecting democracy, and voters think he is more honest than Trump.”

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