Joe Biden made a humiliating slip-up at the end of an interview on Sunday.
According to the Daily Caller, the former vice president called Fox News journalist Chris Wallace “Chuck” in a painful gaffe, just moments after Wallace pressed Biden about confused statements he’s made on the campaign trail recently. It was a particularly unfortunate mistake as Biden seeks to convert a comeback victory in South Carolina’s primary to a decisive win nationwide on Super Tuesday.
Biden’s latest blunder
Biden won South Carolina’s primary handily, as his campaign had long hoped, with about 50% of the vote, according to The New York Times. The former vice president wasted no time capitalizing on his only primary victory so far with a blitz of media appearances Sunday morning, but the gaffes didn’t stop coming. At the end of an interview with Wallace, Biden forgot who was interviewing him.
The gaffe put an accent, with unfortunate irony, on Biden’s visible cognitive decline on the campaign trail. Just moments earlier, Wallace had pressed Biden on his recent story — walked back by his campaign — that he was arrested while trying to visit Nelson Mandela in prison in the 1970s, as well as his assertion to a crowd in South Carolina last week that he is running for the Senate.
Biden responded to those questions with confidence, saying he could hardly wait to humiliate Donald Trump on the debate stage. “I want people to see me standing next to him and him standing next to me. We’ll see who’s sleepy.” But then he kept talking. “All right, Chuck. Thank you very much,” Biden signed off.
“All right,” Wallace said. “It’s Chris, but anyway.”
“Chris, I just did Chris. No, no, I just did Chuck. I tell you what, man, these are back-to-back,” Biden said, referring to NBC’s Chuck Todd, who he interviewed with before. “Anyway, I can do it early in the morning too. ”
Joe’s big comeback?
Biden had long bet on South Carolina to save his campaign, and voters in the state delivered for him. The results revived his campaign and marked the end of the road for at least three others: as of Monday, billionaire Tom Steyer, former small-town Mayor Pete Buttigieg, and Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar had all dropped out of the running after suffering dismal results.
As Biden and Klobuchar planned to endorse Biden, according to Fox News, speculation that Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders was making an unstoppable play for the presidential nomination after impressive results in Iowa, New Hampshire, and Nevada appeared to dampen, at the very least. Biden confidently contrasted himself with Sanders on Sunday, telling Wallace that Americans want “results” rather than “revolution.”
But Biden is behind Sanders in the polls in critical, delegate-rich states like California, The Hill reports, and he hasn’t invested nearly as much money or time into reaching voters in those states, according to NBC, making interviews like the one with Wallace all the more important. Unfortunately, he can’t stop putting his foot in his mouth.
At a speech in Texas on Monday, Biden appeared to forget the words of the Declaration of Independence, Mediaite reported. “We hold these truths to be self-evident. All men and women created by the you know, you know the thing,” he said.
Whatever happens, there is no doubt that Super Tuesday will play a decisive role in shaping the path forward for the remaining candidates, including billionaire Mike Bloomberg, who will appear on the ballot for the first time.