Joe Biden has made quite the name for himself for his obvious avoidance of the press throughout the most recent months of his presidential campaign. On Friday, however, he actually opened up to reporters and took some questions. The list of questions, however, left a lot to be desired.
To kick things off, a staff writer from The Atlantic asked a question about a story published by the magazine accusing the president of spewing hate and vitriol about the U.S. Military. The article asserted that Trump has called fallen soldiers from the First World War as "suckers" and "losers." Throughout the day on Friday, following the release of that article, the magazine was skewered for publishing that story as fact but keeping all sources "anonymous."
Despite the lack of evidence for the article and its claims, the representative for The Atlantic asked Biden in Delaware on Monday just how the president's alleged words represented the state of his soul.
"What does it tell you about the president's soul?" the reporter asked, in all seriousness.
What kind of question is this?!?!? pic.twitter.com/JJ02CuoGV2— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) September 4, 2020
The questions didn't get any more serious from that moment, as reporters on a mysterious "list" that a Biden staffer was controlling off-screen lopped softball after softball at the presidential candidate.
The first question was from a staff writer for The Atlantic. https://t.co/Ftq7EhcQ5n— Emily Larsen (@emilyelarsen) September 4, 2020
Just hours after Biden's brief round of comments and question and answer session, President Trump faced his normal firing squad from reporters at the White House who did everything they could to trip him up. Biden's much easier experience, after months of ducking questions and fleeing the stage before reporters had a chance to ask them, didn't seem to impress many people.
Pathetic performance by reporters at Biden press conference today. One softball question after another. Biden, though at times halting and unclear, was more forceful than usual.— Brit Hume (@brithume) September 4, 2020
The @JoeBiden press conference is a farce. One planted question after another. Every one of the questions is a setup for a Biden attack on the president. The staff pick who gets to ask questions.— Joel Pollak (@joelpollak) September 4, 2020
A text from a friend watching the press conference: “Who are asking Biden these questions?? It's like watching someone make sure a 3 year old wins CandyLand.”— Mark Hemingway (@Heminator) September 4, 2020
Questions about the level of preparation Biden undertakes for his press conferences also persisted. During a press conference in Kenosha, Wisconsin, earlier this week, one resident informed the candidate that she was supposed to read off of a sheet that was handed to her but she wasn't going to do that.
At a point in the Friday press conference, Biden read the words "end of quote" off the teleprompter and appeared to be referencing index cards after being asked questions by reporters.