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Is Biden too old to be president? | podcast | News

At 81, Joe Biden has a wealth of experience to draw on. There are only four years difference between him and Donald Trump. And his rival is as well known as the president for his language errors and gaffes. However, something has changed.

Unease grew over Biden’s perceived fragility and mental acuity — and that was before an explosive report from the U.S. Justice Department’s special counsel. In the report, Robert Hur, the Republican special counsel, said Biden would not face criminal charges for mishandling classified documents. The decision should have been good news for Biden, except that the reason given – that Biden would appear to any jury as a “friendly, well-meaning older man with a poor memory” – was very damning. Biden responded at a news conference by rejecting the inference that he was old and embarrassed. But in doing so, he managed to confuse the names of the Mexican and Egyptian presidents.

Biden supporters argue that Trump is just as prone to making mistakes and is hardly more reliable, the Guardian’s Washington DC bureau chief said, David Smith, Remarks. Yet, one way or another, the mistakes Biden is making are all seen as a sign that he is losing his grip. Michel Safi wonders why the same accusations against Trump don’t hold up and how Biden’s campaign can prove the president is fit and strong enough for another four-year term.



Joe Biden sitting in a chair at the White House

Photograph: Andrew Harnik/AP

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