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Douglas Andrews / September 29, 2022

Two Dolts in the White House

In the space of a single day, the president and vice president tried gamely to out-gaffe each other.

It could’ve happened to any one of us.

It could’ve happened to you, for example. Two months ago, you might’ve been stunned to hear the tragic news that a coworker in your company of 537 employees had been killed in a horrific head-on collision. In your capacity as leader of the small, grief-stricken company, you might’ve sent out a note that you were “shocked and saddened” by her death while sending your deepest condolences to her husband. And, as a tribute to your colleague of 10 years, you might’ve ordered the flag out in front of the office to be flown at half-staff.

Yes, you might’ve done all these things. And then, at an event yesterday that your fallen colleague had worked tirelessly to make possible, you might’ve simply forgotten all that and given her a shout-out during your remarks.

“Jackie, are you here? Where’s Jackie?”

Yep, it could’ve happened to any one of us.

Sure it could’ve.

Twenty-Fifth Amendment, anyone?

Imagine being Joe Biden’s press secretary and having to clean up that steaming hot mess — especially if you’re not very good at your job to begin with. Indeed, Karine Jean-Pierre sounded like a broken record when asked repeatedly about her boss’s utterly bizarre remark by reporters from ABC, CNN, CBS, and The Washington Post.

“The president was naming the congressional champions on this issue and was acknowledging her incredible work,” Jean-Pierre gamely lied. “He had already planned to welcome the congresswoman’s family to the White House. On Friday, there will be a bill signing in her honor this coming Friday. So, of course, she was on his mind. She was top of mind for the president.”

Ah, “top of mind.” Perhaps thinking that she’d stumbled onto a plausible excuse, she said it again. And again. And again. And again. And again. And again.

But those surprisingly pesky reporters wouldn’t let it rest. “I just answered the question,” Jean-Pierre babbled. “I clearly have stated what you just laid out. What I have said is that she was on top of mind and that he is going to see her family in just two days’ time on Friday to honor her, to honor her work, to honor, to honor her legacy, if you will.”

Joe Biden was looking for a recently deceased congresswoman, but Karine Jean-Pierre “clearly” stated that we shouldn’t believe our lyin’ eyes and ears.

In all, Jean-Pierre would go on to say “top of mind” 14 times, thereby, we’d guess, exceeding in a brief few moments the full allotment of “top of mind” utterances of all other White House press secretaries combined. But it wasn’t enough for one James Rosen, who doggedly persisted:

“Karine, I have John Lennon top of mind just about every day, but I’m not looking around for him anywhere.”

When a sitting president can’t remember whether a member of Congress is alive or dead — in this case, Indiana Republican Jackie Walorski — that president is in a serious state of cognitive decline. And so it looms there over his head like the Sword of Damocles: The 25th Amendment, the amendment which seems tailor-made for Joe Biden, the amendment which lays out the process of presidential succession when he’s determined to be “unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office.”

Joe Biden is clearly that, but he appears to be hanging on by a thread. And those of us who’d seek to replace him had better be careful what we wish for. Because if Biden is Tweedle Dumb, then his next-in-line might well be Tweedle Dumber.

As Fox News reports, “Vice President Kamala Harris made an unfortunate gaffe during her speech at the Korean Peninsula’s Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) on Thursday, saying that the United States has a ‘strong alliance’ with ‘the Republic of North Korea.’”

A strong alliance? With crazy Kim Jong-un and the nuclear-armed North Koreans? Since when?

We’re not sure what on earth she’s been smoking, but Kamala Harris clearly isn’t ready for prime time. Until we can vote in a sound-minded 47th president in November of 2024, it seems we’re stuck with President Tweedle Dumb.

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