- - Sunday, August 1, 2021

I’ve been a political independent since before my pate became shiny and my teeth lengthened, which means that I’ve suffered decades of Joe Biden’s tergiversations and obfuscations without having to issue apologias for him as my Democratic friends have done (“Biden’s truly bizarre behavior draws renewed scrutiny,” Web, July 29).

Before rising to the political pinnacle, Mr. Biden was best-known for decades of amiable backslapping and chit accumulation around Washington, skills which Barack Obama recognized would be helpful as he sought to become the first Black politician to gain the same pinnacle. Mr. Biden weaponized his inoffensiveness to such a degree that Rep. James Clyburn could muscle Kamala Harris onto the ticket even after Ms. Harris had savaged Mr. Biden in the party primaries.

It is fortunate indeed that the Peter Principle clings so closely to the vice president that the same distinction is deflected somewhat from the president. But independents, impervious to Democratic Party loyalty, see cognitive problems clearly — and are chagrined that both president and vice president are below acceptable standards for high office.




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