Former Vice President Joe Biden is becoming more unhinged as the campaign marches on, and as the Democratic Party's presumptive nominee, they're stuck with him — and are making excuses.
It's not as though they didn't have a warning — other Democrats and media figures have reported that Biden's been unraveling for nearly a year. But now that he's the soon-to-be- crowned nominee, they're falling in line and acting as though everything is fine.
MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell wondered after the first Democratic presidential debate last June, "Does he still have his stuff?" adding, "How sharp is he?"
Sen. Cory Booker expressed doubts in a September post-debate interview with CNN.
"I think that we are at a tough point right now because there are a lot of people who are concerned about Joe Biden's ability to carry the ball all the way across the end line without fumbling," he observed. "And I think that [Julio] Castro has some legitimate concerns about, can he be someone in a long, grueling campaign that can get the ball over the line. And he has every right to call that out."
MSNBC's Joe Scarborough expressed similar concerns after the MSNBC-Washington Post debate in Atlanta last November.
"Are we afraid to say that a lot of his sentences don't make sense?" Scarborough asked after the debate. "That he's having trouble completing thoughts?"
The dust-up Tuesday when Biden told a union electrical worker in Detroit that he was "full of s****" should have renewed and heightened concerns with media figures — but instead they made excuses.
CNN's Chris Cillizza even thought it was great that Biden became unglued during the exchange.
"It's hard for me to see this as anything but good for Biden as he seeks to put away Sanders in the primary and pivot to taking on Trump in the general," he concluded.
Neera Tanden, president of the Center for American Progress, also believed that an unhinged Biden was a good thing.
"Most people look at this video and think he's ready to take on Trump," she said.
This was in response to an observation made by Charlotte Clymer, press secretary for rapid response at the Human Rights Campaign.
"I know a lot of folks, especially on the left, aren't going to wanna hear this, but a lot of voters will be more drawn to Biden because of this video," she tweeted. "To us, it may look clumsy and combative. To them, it looks strong and assertive. Mark my words."
It's as though they weren't listening to the concerns that Democrats and pundits had been making about Biden's mental acuity for nearly a year. Or, more likely, now that Biden is the clear front-runner, they're making excuses.
Others who aren't doing that, however, including former Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein, who's been promoting the hashtag #BidensCognitiveDecline on Twitter recently.
"No, concerns about #BidensCognitiveDecline didn't come from Trump, Sanders, or Russia," she reminded people Tuesday. "They were raised from the start of his campaign by Democratic officials, candidates, & pundits. If you're in denial about the state Biden's in, they're duping you. It's textbook gaslighting."
Why should her opinion matter? Because she isn't a run-of-the-mill politician and former third-party candidate — she's a Harvard-educated physician.
On Saturday, before Biden overreacted to the union worker's Second Amendment concerns, Stein tweeted, "obvious cognitive decline. He said he's running for Senate, confused wife & sister, forgot Obama's name etc. This isn't going away. If Dems close their eyes & keep pushing Joe, it'll be an agonizing 8 months ahead."
And she suggested that the next debate format, scheduled for March 15, has been changed to accommodate a physically and mentally declining Biden. It went from a formal debate with the moderators presenting questions to Biden and Sanders standing at podiums, to a more informal town hall format.
Now pre-approved questions will be presented by audience members to the candidates, who will be seated for the two-hour venue.
If covering for Biden is what it's all about, it can't last forever. Sooner or later it's going to fall apart, and when it does, it'll be a Republican blowout.
Michael Dorstewitz is a retired lawyer and has been a frequent contributor to BizPac Review and Liberty Unyielding. He is also a former U.S. Merchant Marine officer and an enthusiastic Second Amendment supporter, who can often be found honing his skills at the range. To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.