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Biden and America’s Presidency

"The Times they are 'A-Changin'"

2 mins read
U.S. President Joe Biden (R) and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida hold a joint press conference at the White House in Washington, D.C., the United States, April 10, 2024. (Xinhua/Liu Jie)

It is impossible to know if Joe Biden will tough it out, hang in there as president, and run for reelection.  Most pundits say if that happens –he stays in office and runs– he will lose to former President Trump. Within the ranks of the Democratic party there is concern about losing the next election.  There is less concern, or so it seems, about Biden’s ability to remain in office.  

For the last couple of years the White House, all the Democrats, some Republicans and virtually all the press, has covered up Joe Biden’s physical and mental problems. We have watched, in dismay, as Biden read from 3×5 cards (sometimes also repeating the instructions on the cards). We have watched Biden stumble going up and down stairs.  We have watched Biden promote utter lies with no comment at all by the media.

But now the “secret” is out.  It isn’t possible any longer to cover up Biden’s infirmities, which are worsening every day.  His wife can guide him into and out of a meeting, holding his hand, but the guy is a lost cause.

It is quite true for the past few years the US government has been run by unelected officials and bureaucrats.  The President can’t make decisions because he is mentally unable to do so.

The President has extraordinary power, but the Constitution and tradition expect that it is the President, not some faceless underlings, who exercises power. Biden cannot, plain and simple.

This is an alarming situation, not only for the United States, but for many nations that depend on the United States.  It encourages adversaries to mercilessly exploit the total leadership vacuum.  Those living in many parts of the world where there are active threats are left with extreme uncertainty and massive risk.

A singular Biden decision to not run again is an even greater threat than Biden staying in office.  As a “lame, lame” duck of the worst kind, increasingly imbecilic, staying in power even until January is hugely dangerous. 

The solution is the 25th Amendment which, as it is written, can be initiated either by the President himself, by the Vice President and members of the cabinet, or even by Congress. If the 25th Amendment to the Constitution is exercised, the Vice President becomes the Acting President until such time as the President himself says he has recovered his wits and is ready to resume office.  To do that he would need the approval of his cabinet.  Congress may also intervene in the matter, although the 25th amendment does not explain exactly how.

Everyone now knows that Joe Biden is on a downward skid that cannot be reversed.  That means that if he steps aside based on the provisions of the 25th amendment, he won’t be back.  He also won’t run for reelection.  He and his family will return to Delaware, from whence they came. (Whether he can convince Kamala to absolve all the Biden’s from prosecution is unclear. She may figure that doing so could harm her nomination chances.)

There are many who are just as concerned about Kamala Harris replacing Biden, and it may be that her role as Vice President guarantees Biden staying in office.  Harris is hardly Presidential caliber, and her often amusing, somewhat silly forays in the public space have been evidence of her lack of ability.  Harris would inherit the same team that Biden has, and they will continue to dictate US foreign and domestic policy.  Harris will not want to rock the boat if she has any dream of getting the Democratic nomination for President at the August 19th Democratic convention.  The best that can be said is she will stay awake and won’t fall down the stairs.

The internal war in the Democratic party has only just begun.  The press and media want a nice minority leftist candidate to take on Trump.  They almost certainly will get their wish.

Stephen Bryen

Stephen Bryen is a former Deputy Under Secretary of Defense and is a leading expert in security strategy and technology. Bryen writes for Asia Times, American Thinker, Epoch Times, Newsweek, Washington Times, the Jewish Policy Center and others.

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