This morning the Los Angeles Times endorsed Joe Biden for president:
Biden has a record of seeking expert advice and listening to it. Progressives may take issue with his choice of advisers, many of whom are establishment figures he’s known for years. But he clearly has a level of respect for data, science and research that the incumbent does not. As 81 U.S. Nobel Prize winners in chemistry, physics and medicine wrote in an open letter endorsing Biden, “At no time in our nation’s history has there been a greater need for our leaders to appreciate the value of science in formulating public policy.”
Temperamentally, too, Biden seems like an ideal fit for our polarized time. A famously empathetic figure — he lost his wife and daughter in a car accident shortly after Delaware first elected him to the Senate in 1972 — he practices civility, champions compromise and seeks unity in a country Trump has divided with a cacophony of culture-war distractions. The contrast between Biden’s speech accepting the Democratic nomination for the presidency, which was a call for Americans to come together, and Trump’s speech accepting the Republican nomination, which promoted fear and loathing within the country, couldn’t have been more pronounced.
That would have been a pretty convincing endorsement in 2008. 12 years have elapsed since then and VP Biden is now 77 years old. It’s not outrageous to be concerned that he is suffering from some sort of cognitive decline—cognitive decline frequently accelerates in one’s late 70s.
As it works out there are concerns about both VP Biden’s and President Trump’s mental fitness:
More than a majority of voters say presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is mentally fit to be president, compared with less than half who said the same about President Trump, according to a new Hill-HarrisX poll.
Fifty-six percent of respondents said Biden was mentally fit to lead the nation, compared to 44 percent who said he wasn’t. For Trump, 45 percent said he was mentally fit to occupy the Oval Office, with 55 percent disagreeing.
That the concern about either candidate should be that high is a sad commentary.
I find it particularly worrisome in Biden’s case for the simple reason that I do not believe that Kamala Harris is remotely qualified to be president by experience, performance, temperament, or character. Note, too, that more than 98% of Democratic primary voters preferred any other candidate over Sen. Harris.