Media Addresses Biden’s Debate Performance

Unnamed officials have claimed the president’s raspy voice during the clash with Donald Trump was caused by a cold

US President Joe Biden’s performance in Thursday night’s debate with challenger Donald Trump has been met with concern from left-leaning media outlets, who report that the incumbent appeared to lose his train of thought and was sometimes difficult to understand.

Forty-five minutes into the televised debate, sources familiar with Biden’s preparations said he had been suffering from a cold, CBS News reported. The outlet cited a top official as saying the president had been examined by a doctor who confirmed the cold.

The president’s illness “obviously had started to hit his stride,” another source told The Hill.

The 90-minute encounter, 130 days before the US election, has reignited the debate over the 81-year-old president’s ability to serve another term.

According to CNN, which hosted the event in Atlanta, Biden’s most important job was to reassure voters about his physical and mental capacity. “He failed to do so,” the outlet stated.

“Making sure that we’re able to make every single solitary person eligible for what I’ve been able to do with, the eh, COVID. Excuse me, with dealing with everything we have to do with,” Biden said at one point, before appearing to freeze up. “Look, we finally beat Medicare,” he concluded.

“Democrats just committed collective suicide,” a party strategist who has worked on presidential campaigns told NBC News. He described Biden as “tired” and “babbling,” calling the debate “a nail in the political coffin.” 

“The stumbling and diminished” Joe Biden made Donald Trump, who is 78, look “competent and energetic,” a former Trump campaign official told NBC News.

During the debate, the age gap of 3 years and 7 months between the two “seemed much larger,” CNN noted.

A CBS News poll earlier this month found that only a third of voters think Biden has the mental and cognitive capacity to be president. Trump fared relatively better, with half of voters considering him physically healthy enough to lead America.