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OPINION

Bill Maher’s Blind Spot? Joe Biden

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
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AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

Bill Maher is a great interviewer with a great sense of humor. However, he has a Joe Biden-shaped blind spot. Maher is a fan of the president. To be more specific, he’s a Biden apologist.

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Whenever the president makes a notable gaffe, Maher is always quick to defend him (see here and here).

During a recent interview with Piers Morgan, the comedian was asked if Biden, who turns 81 later this year, was too old for the job, Maher argued, rather disingenuously, that Biden is just another victim of ageism. Age, insisted Maher, 67, is “an individual thing.” “Some people are old at 50,” said the politically incorrect comedian, “and some people are young at 90.” Biden, he said, is still fit for purpose, and should definitely run for a second term. On the most recent episode of his hit show, Real Time with Bill Maher, the host got into a heated debate with one of his guests, Konstanin Kisin. 

When Kisin suggested that Biden should not run for reelection, Maher snapped back, asking what exactly Biden has done wrong?

A better question to ask is, what has Biden got right?

Biden recently paid a visit to my home country of Ireland. During this four-day trip, the president made a number of telling gaffes, including telling Irish leaders to “lick the world.” He also confused the New Zealand rugby team with a group of British soldiers from the 1920’s (long story). By the time Biden boarded his plane and bid farewell to the people of Ireland, my fellow countrymen and women found themselves stuck somewhere between a state of bemusement and distress, scratching their aching heads in disbelief. This man, they asked, is actually the president of the greatest country in the world?

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When defending Biden, Maher regularly makes the mistake of conflating age with wisdom. Simply becoming older doesn’t make a man (or a woman) wiser. Has Biden had a tough life? Yes, most definitely. Has he served in genuine positions of importance? Again, most definitely. However, this doesn’t mean that he’s wise, and it certainly doesn’t mean that he’s a good representative for America. Simply accumulating a certain number of birthdays tells us nothing about an individual's mental capacity or their ability to carry out certain duties.

There is a reason why Biden’s approval rating is at an all-time low. His job performance leaves a lot to be desired.

If in doubt, cast your mind back to the disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan; it was both rushed and poorly planned. The predictable and preventable disaster actually ended up making the Taliban, arguably the most dangerous terrorist organization in the world, stronger. Moreover, as the aforementioned Kisin pointed out, the manner in which American troops departed actually emboldened Putin, encouraging the Russian leader to capitalize on the United States’ perceived weaknesses and invade Ukraine.  Kisin is right. According to Carl Bildt, a diplomat and political analyst, when Kabul fell, the Kremlin “certainly took note.” Shortly after the Taliban took over, noted Bildt, Vladimir Putin’s national security adviser told the Ukrainians that they “could not rely on the US to stick around for the long term.” “Within weeks of the fall of Kabul,” added Bildt, “Russian troop trains and tank transports had begun their massive move towards the Ukrainian border. As one war ended, another began.”

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Not only has the Biden administration made the U.S. weaker on the global stage, it has made Americans weaker, too. At home, inflation has increased by 14.9 percent since Biden took office in January of 2021. Real wages have decreased significantly under Biden. The average American is now paying 15 percent more on their mortgage payments. Interest rates continue to increase. As China and its currency, the renminbi, continue to grow in power, the U.S. and the U.S. dollar continue their downward descent. One in ten Americans have absolutely no savings, and 64 percent of the population live paycheck to paycheck. The country has well over half a million homeless people. Under Biden, the border crisis continues to worsen. Although the president cannot be blamed for all of America’s ills, he’s certainly not blameless — and he’s certainly not a good representative for the people of America. This fact appears to be lost on Maher, a man known for getting so much right. On Biden’s competency, though, the comedian is laughably wrong

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