White Home officers and Democrats fanned out to defend President Biden’s psychological health on Sunday, reflecting the rising nervousness within the president’s administration over a particular counsel report that fueled concern about his age.
“It is a report that went off the rails,” Bob Bauer, Mr. Biden’s private lawyer, mentioned on CBS’s “Face the Nation.” “A shabby work product.”
The report, launched on Thursday, cleared Mr. Biden of felony wrongdoing in his dealing with of labeled paperwork after leaving the vice presidency. However the particular counsel within the case, Robert Ok. Hur, characterised Mr. Biden, 81, as a “well-meaning, aged man with a poor reminiscence” who had “diminished schools in advancing age.”
Democrats have gone on the offensive to discredit what they are saying is a partisan hit that probably violated Justice Division coverage, particularly taking concern with the descriptions questioning Mr. Biden’s reminiscence.
Alejandro N. Mayorkas, Mr. Biden’s homeland safety secretary, mentioned on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that “the duty of a federal prosecutor is to analyze and be taught the information and apply the legislation to these information.”
“The particular counsel did this within the case, made a conclusion that there isn’t any case — case closed — then made gratuitous, pointless and inaccurate private remarks, and people are improper,” Mr. Mayorkas mentioned.
Whereas the report discovered that “no felony expenses are warranted” towards Mr. Biden, the descriptions about his reminiscence put a highlight on what was already a major concern for voters: his age. In New York Occasions/Siena School polling within the fall, greater than 70 p.c of battleground state voters agreed with the assertion that Mr. Biden was “simply too outdated to be an efficient president.”
“Now we have to face the truth of the truth that if you get to these ages, you get diminished,” Nikki Haley, the previous South Carolina governor and Republican presidential candidate who has additionally attacked the psychological acuity of former president Donald J. Trump, mentioned on “Face the Nation.” “These are individuals making selections on our nationwide safety. These are individuals making selections on the way forward for our financial system. We have to know they’re on the prime of their sport.”
Senator Tom Cotton, Republican of Arkansas, mentioned the content material of the report was not a shock.
“Look, there’s no new bombshells about President Biden on this,” he mentioned on “Fox Information Sunday.” “The American individuals have seen for years that he’s a person with a failing reminiscence. What this report signifies although is that you’ve a blatant double customary: If Joe Biden just isn’t going to face felony expenses, then Donald Trump shouldn’t be dealing with felony expenses both.”
Mr. Biden’s allies have additionally doubled down on a marketing campaign technique of framing the election as a alternative between Mr. Biden and Mr. Trump, whom they paint as a menace to democracy and who faces expenses over his personal dealing with of labeled paperwork. Mr. Trump, 77, just lately confused the leaders of Hungary and Turkey, warned that the nation was on the verge of World Battle II and claimed that he defeated Barack Obama as a substitute of Hillary Clinton within the 2016 election.
White Home officers had been additionally fast to spotlight Mr. Trump’s remarks at a marketing campaign occasion on Saturday, when he mentioned that whereas he was president, he advised leaders of NATO nations that he would “encourage” Russia “to do regardless of the hell they need” to nations that had not paid the cash they owed to the army alliance.
“What our nation ought to concentrate on is the way in which that Donald Trump is undermining rule of legislation, democracy and our security as a nation,” Senator Chris Coons, Democrat of Delaware, mentioned on ABC’s “This Week” when requested in regards to the particular counsel’s report.
However it was clear on Sunday that Mr. Biden’s aides and allies additionally felt a way of urgency to assault Mr. Hur’s report and persuade voters involved over Mr. Biden’s age.
“The precise concern just isn’t going to go away,” Quentin James, a co-founder of the Collective PAC, a company that goals to elect Black officers, mentioned in an interview. “I feel the one solution to beat it’s once more to get on the market on the street and marketing campaign actually exhausting. And that’s what we count on from every other candidate, no matter your age or expertise.”
Mitch Landrieu, the co-chair of Mr. Biden’s marketing campaign, mentioned on “Meet the Press” that Mr. Biden had already traveled throughout the nation all through his presidency to explain his home agenda.
“It’s this advert hominem assault that questioned the president’s capability,” Mr. Landrieu mentioned of Mr. Hur’s report. He added: “This man is hard. He’s good. He’s on his sport.”
The White Home has additionally made some extent of dispatching officers with prosecutorial backgrounds to assault the credibility of the report. A day after it was launched, Vice President Kamala Harris cited her time as a prosecutor as she described the report as “gratuitous” and “politically motivated.”
Erica L. Inexperienced and Karoun Demirjian contributed reporting.