Dazed and Confused: Biden gives disastrous debate performance of epic proportions

The following is a news analysis

Even entering the stage with low expectations, President Joe Biden’s debate performance stands out as arguably the worst presidential debate performance in our time.

The president frequently appeared confused and befuddled as he stammered and stumbled through answers to the moderator’s questions, lost his place, and attempted snappy comebacks in a voice that was faltering and difficult to hear.

Early in the debate, Biden froze entirely for approximately ten seconds, rescued by one of the moderators who moved along quickly to the next question without acknowledging the obviously remarkable moment.

In contrast, former President Donald Trump displayed a focused, controlled, and in-command performance.

Biden frequently self-corrected his words including from “millions” to “billions,” from “century” to “decade,” and from “millionaries” to “billionaires.” But he often made errors and mistakes without correcting himself, and rambled on incoherently.

In one particularly difficult exchange, a moderator asked Biden if he supports legal limits on how late in pregnancy a woman should be able to get an abortion. 

Biden answered: “I supported Roe v Wade, which had three trimesters. First time is between a woman and a doctor. Second time is between a doctor and an extreme situation. A third time is betwen the doctor I mean, between the woman and the state.”

At times Biden seemed to know what he wanted to express, but had trouble communicating his thoughts. He said “Fentanyl is down,” but was unclear on whether he meant illegal importation, use, deaths, or some other facet. He also said that “We beat Medicare,” leaving the audience to wonder what he was trying to convey.

Biden also made numerous statements that have been proven false. He repeatedly stated that Trump told people to “inject bleach.” That was a popular misinformation talking point when Trump was president, but it was shown that Trump never said that. Biden said that he is the first president in a century (then corrected it to “decade”) to not lose any American troops, seeming to have forgotten or not know about the troops killed in the botched withdrawal from Afghanistan. Biden falsely claimed illegal immigration is 40% lower than when Trump was president. In fact, it’s hit one record high after another. He repeated the unsubstantiated allegation that Trump had insulted veterans and called them “losers and suckers,” even though that narrative was later disputed by more than a dozen witnesses who’d been present at the event. Biden claimed Trump had called Nazis “fine people” when the full context of Trump’s quoted remarks showed he had not done so. Biden also seemed to claim that there are no late term abortions, and said no terrorists have crossed illegally through the Southern border—though he later seemed to acknowledge perhaps there had been some. Biden also falsely claimed he’d been endorsed by the Border Patrol. That prompted the Border Patrol’s union to issue a tweet stating, “We never have and never will” endorse Biden.

Biden was first to call names during the debate, looking at Trump and snarling that Trump is a “loser” and a “sucker.” Biden also cussed several times, and repeatedly referred to Trump as a “whiner.”

Trump repeatedly called Biden the worst president in our history, but appeared relatively reserved when it came to the personal attacks, compared to his typical presentation. Trump also said Biden is a complainer, and said, “This man is a criminal,” referring to Biden threatening to withhold $1 billion in US funds from Ukraine if the president didn’t fire the prosecutor who was investigating the company that happened to be paying Biden’s son, Hunter, millions. Both men referred to the other as liars or as having lied about various matters.

Trump (age 78) is just three years younger than Biden (age 81), but seemed far more competent, youthful, and in command of the subject matter than the elder candidate.

Trump, for the most part, didn’t refer to Biden’s stunning gaffes and rambles. But on one occasion, Trump said, “I really don’t know what he said at the end of that sentence and I don’t think he knows what he said, either.” 

By most accounts, CNN’s moderators did a good job. Some of the questions contained bias, such as the implicit acceptance of debated points (i.e. that there is a man-made and man-controlled “climate crisis,” and that Trump should automatically accept the results of a future election regardless of whether or not it is fair), but each candidate was given equal time and opportunity to answer the questions and follow ups. The range and wording of the questions were typically fair and, at some times, appropriately challenging to each candidate.

Biden’s performance was so worrisome, some Democrats not only raised the demand that he be replaced in the 2024 race, but quietly questioned whether he is fit to serve out his current term.

Biden could be seen immediately after the debate at a “Watch Party” where supporters cheered him on.

You can watch a replay of the debate here:


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13 thoughts on “Dazed and Confused: Biden gives disastrous debate performance of epic proportions”

  1. “At times Biden seemed to know what he wanted to express, but had trouble communicating his thoughts. “

    Classic dementia. The person thinks one thing but says something else and often doesn’t realize. This gets worse and worse as the disease progresses.

    Jill Biden is exploiting her husband for her own ends and until now for the Democrats. But what do they do? Kamala is in the way of any replacement plan.

  2. Ms Attkisson, a very concise and cogent review! Overall, the debate was directed by the CNN production staff –thus, talking points and topics were predictable. Biden’s performance was also predictable. No surprises from Trump either. It is most interesting to note that RFK, jr was on another channel participating in the debate and offering his observations on the topics discussed. This is indicative of a more democratic social media sphere operating free of the usual suspect’s influence (also sans Google’s thought police in tow…hopefully.) I was somewhat surprised to see CNN’s moderators acting with restraint when asking Trump particular questions; although I agree with you that there were biased contextual moments–re J6 related spin, and accepting election results(even if We voters have serious questions during the vote-count aftermath.) There can be no doubt that Trump would make a vast majority of American citizens feel more confident re economy, war threats, and immigration policy. As ‘commander in chief’ We the people would also feel ‘more secure’ with Trump as POTUS, despite the usual leftist rhetoric and spin-factory-pablum incessantly dumped upon Trump’s character. I am left with a nagging question: Does RFK,jr stand a chance of gaining broader support–particularly from the liberal-leaning younger voters who suffer from TDS?

  3. I quickly turned off CNN and went to X in order to hear RFK, jr’s replies to the same questions. RFK is knowledgeable on every subject, his answers thoughtful, plus he is kind and makes sense.
    It is clear why CNN, Trump and Biden did not want to share the stage with him.
    RFK, jr actually behaves presidentially…respectful, no name calling or lying.
    More than a million viewed the “3-way debate” on X and I hope others will take a listen.

  4. I thought it was poetic justice that CNN, arguably the MSM’s most vocal opponent of Donald Trump, hosted a debate that resulted in perhaps the greatest boost to Trump’s campaign yet. I agree that the questions were reasonably fair – unlike the kind of grilling that CNN anchors would normally give to Republicans, and softballs to Democrats. The debate format provided the public with a raw, unshielded, unscripted, un-spinnable, and undeniable view of what many of us already knew about Biden. Whatever CNN hoped to accomplish in this debate backfired spectacularly, either by way of marketing and self-promotion, or hoping that Trump would self-destruct.

  5. I just thought this was rather sad… Joe Biden is being used. Speaks volumes about those in power and their willingness to exploit whatever means available to stay in power. Evil is a real thing, and it isn’t some red guy carrying a pitchfork. We’re seeing real time.

  6. So, my question is what if they replace Joe. Is there a way for the DNC to pick someone else in his place or would they have to conduct primaries again? Is there a way for Joe to bow out at the last minute after the ballots are printed and his votes would go to the person the DNC chooses – say like Hillary?
    That sounds illegal, but it is something that is being put out there. That seems very unlikely to be allowed….

  7. There is no doubt the Democratic party’s choice for a second term president went very bad Thursday night. Obviously he was drug free, unlike with his State of the Union speech where he was sky high on something.
    If you compared Thursday night with Fridays campaign you were looking at two different people. The excuse given was he was dealing with a “cold” which disappeared overnight??
    Unless Biden voluntarily steps down, which I doubt he will do, with his blind addiction to politics he will not let go. Maybe Jill has some influence in that? If he chooses to stay he will loose to Trump without a doubt. Americans surely can see his weak state of mind and will vote him out. Not because they don’t like him. Rather more for the safety and preservation of our country.

  8. 22 million government employees will continue to cheer Biden on.
    Tax payers will question why they are forced to keep paying their government paychecks, perks and pensions.

  9. As others have pointed out, there is Teleprompter Joe and their is Naken Joe.
    You got Naked Joe during the debate. You got Teleprompter Joe in the immediate clean up act.

    The Hur investigation got Naked Joe – we know now why they want to hide the actual recordings.
    Naked Joe has the code to the nuclear foot ball.

  10. Biden’s pathetic debate performance resoundingly exposed the lying and deceiving of all those in Joe’s orbit including the Democrat Party and the MSM that have been hiding and covering up the truth about Joe’s health and mental status. By now, everyone should realize that Biden is a serious threat to national security. US citizens will be paying a heavy price for years to come brought about by the MSM and Democrat Party lying and covering up of information voters needed both before Biden’s election and after. I’m not sure the US can recover from years of such massive corruption from the Democrats that has resulting in unmooring the US from the Constitution, Bill of Rights, rule of law, and equal justice under the law. Also, what about the oath of office of the President which includes seeing that the laws are faithfully executed, that too has been turned to garbage. Hold on, it’s going to be a very rough ride from here.

  11. I said I wouldn’t watch, and I didn’t. Being familar with all of the issues that matter, there was nothing to watch other than performance art.

    And judging by the media accounts, including selected clips of the “debate” and peoples comments in comment sections like this, what transpired is EXACTLY what I expected, and it’s noteworthy that literally ALL of the post-debate coverage is about PERFORMANCE, not issues, and 99% of that performance coverage is about Joetard’s FAILED performance.

    NOW many democrats are defending Joetard IN PUBLIC while panicking and desperately trying to get Joetard to “voluntarily” resign as the nominee.

    And deals are being made and offered, such as pardoning Hunter AFTER the election because Joetard will HAVE to have that promise in order to resign BUT it can’t be publicly announced until after the election without ruining whatever small chance whoever runs will have.

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