President Joe Biden made a joke about his age Monday after a special counsel report questioned his memory and a new poll shows a majority of Americans think he is too old to run for a second term.
“I know it doesn’t seem like it, but I’ve been here for a while,” the president said during a speech to the National Association of Counties.
“I do remember,” Biden, 81, added. The crowd of local officials laughed and cheered.
Biden’s tone was markedly different from the combative one he adopted last week after special counsel Robert Hur issued his report, which contained the politically embarrassing remark of Biden as a “well-intentioned old man with a bad memory.”
The president was in good spirits Monday but, when the report dropped Thursday, he delivered hastily scheduled remarks criticizing Hur for casting doubt on his memory, including the death of his son Beau.
President Joe Biden joked about his age during his remarks at the National Association of Counties Legislative Conference.
In the wake of the report, a large majority of American voters (86 percent) say Biden is too old for another term, according to a new poll.
And 62 percent of those surveyed in the ABC News/Ipsos The poll says former President Donald Trump, 77, is also too old for another term in the White House.
Fifty-nine percent of respondents say the two main 2024 contenders are too old, while 27 percent think only the current president is old enough not to be considered.
Biden is the oldest president in US history. He broke Trump’s record by eight years when he took office at the age of 78 in January 2021.
If elected to a second term, Biden would be 82 years old at the time of his inauguration.
The latest negative poll for Biden’s re-election bid follows Thursday’s release of the Justice Department’s long-awaited report, which did not recommend charges against the former president for his handling of classified documents.
More than 8.5 in 10 American voters think President Joe Biden is too old for another term, and only 62% feel the same about Trump.
Hur’s 345-page report said investigators found President Biden’s “memory was significantly limited” during interviews with his ghostwriter and an interview with Hur’s office last year.
According to the report, Biden – during the 2023 interview – did not remember when his son Beau died or the years he was vice president.
‘In his interview with our office, Mr. Biden’s memory was worse. He did not remember when he was vice president, forgetting on the first day of the interview when his term ended (“if it were 2013, when did I stop being vice president?”), and forgetting on the second day of the interview when his term began (“in 2009, “Am I still vice president?”), according to the report.
“He couldn’t remember, even after several years, when his son Beau died.”
Beau Biden, an Iraq War veteran who served as Delaware attorney general, died in 2015 after battling brain cancer.
Biden, last week, was visibly angry when he refuted that.
“How the hell dare you bring that up?” the president said Thursday night from the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House. “Frankly, when they asked me that question, I thought, ‘It was none of his business.'”
“I don’t need anyone to remind me when he passed away,” Biden added.
“Every Memorial Day we hold a service to remember him attended by friends, family and people who loved him,” Biden said, after a pause. “I don’t need anyone, I don’t need anyone to remind me when he passed away.”
Joe Biden is sworn in as vice president in January 2013 as his wife Jill Biden and son Beau Biden watch him take the oath of office.
Trump and his allies quickly seized on the report and its conclusions to question Biden’s fitness to hold office.
‘If Joe Biden is not fit to press charges, they are not going to try him for a crime, but is it okay for him to become commander in chief?’ Trump said at a rally in South Carolina over the weekend.
‘Biden is bad for democracy because he is tremendously incompetent. … Furthermore, he uses the Department of Justice and the FBI and everything he can to go after an opponent and nothing like that has ever happened in this country.’