“Gaffes Machine” Biden is creating a new machine. Do candidate slips matter?

He plays

WASHINGTON — At a fundraiser organized and attended largely by Asian American donors and lawmakers on Wednesday, President Joe Biden described three Asian countries, including U.S. ally Japan and its emerging partner India, as “xenophobic.”

Biden, who has credited immigrants with fueling the US economy, went on to attribute “xenophobia” as a reason for the difficulties in the economies of Russia, China, Japan and India.

Exception: India is one of the world’s fastest-growing economies, with its GDP growing by 8.4% in the last three months of 2023.

Biden who He called himself a “mistake machine.” He was making a point about “freedom, America, and democracy.”

“You know, one of the reasons our economy is growing is because of you and so many others. Why? Because we welcome immigrants.” “We look to the reason. Look, think about it. Why is China faltering economically to this extent? Why is Japan having a problem? Why Russia? Why India? Because they are xenophobes.”

“They don’t want immigrants,” he added. Immigrants are what makes us strong.”

Biden is not the first politician to make a mistake.

During a summit in Washington, D.C., last year, former President Donald Trump claimed that Biden would “plunge the world into World War II,” conflated Biden with Barack Obama, and boasted to the crowd that he was leading Obama in the 2024 polls.

Trump described Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban as Turkey’s leader, and confused his ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, a Republican Party rival, and former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

See also  Hurricane Fiona intensified into a Category 4 storm, heading toward Bermuda after hitting Puerto Rico and other Caribbean islands

“You know, by the way, they never reported the crowd on January 6,” Trump said, deflecting on the 2021 Capitol riot at a rally before this year’s New Hampshire primary. “You know, Nikki Haley, Nikki Haley, Nikki Haley… Nikki Haley was in charge of security. We offered them 10,000 people, soldiers, National Guard, whatever they wanted. They rejected him.”

Trump still beats Haley in the primaries.

As the press and social media pounce on candidates’ missteps, do they affect the course of the election campaign? Do candidate slips matter?

In the Trump era, voters are accustomed to heated rhetoric And rhetorical sensitivity William F. B. O’Reilly, a Republican strategist, said this would have been considered remarkable a generation ago.

more: “Permanently banned?” no! Donald Trump is reaching out to Nikki Haley’s wealthy donors

“Voters are more likely to see the bigger picture now and reject everyday mistakes,” he said. “Moreover, the vast majority of voters already know who they’re going to vote for, and almost nothing will change their minds. Consider Trump’s assumption about shooting someone on Fifth Avenue: It turns out he was right.”

“I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody, and I wouldn’t lose any voters, OK?” Trump told an Iowa crowd in January 2016.

The wild or wildly incorrect statements are not limited to Biden and his billionaire foe.

Former President George W. Bush once condemned the “unprovoked and brutal” invasion of Iraq when he meant Ukraine. (Bush is the one who invaded Iraq in 2003.) In fact, there is a Wikipedia page dedicated to “Bushite” – a repository of his linguistic missteps.

Age factor

Melissa DeRosa, a Democratic strategist, said the gaffes are important to the extent that they reinforce the candidates’ weakness.

See also  China's Belt and Road: Indonesia opens Whoosh high-speed rail line

“Trump misses just as much as Biden does, but because of the vulnerabilities surrounding Biden’s age, it hurts him even more when he misses because — fairly or unfairly — it reimposes a negativity that resonates with the public.”

according to ABC News/Ipsos poll In a February poll, 86% of Americans believe Biden, 81, is too old to serve another term as president, while 62% believe Trump, 77, is too old. The poll was conducted after allegations in Special Counsel Robert Hoare described Biden as an “old man with a failing memory” and suggested that age would still be a factor in the 2024 election.

more: How old is Trump? Here’s how old the former president will be on Election Day 2024.

more: How old will Joe Biden be if he is re-elected president in 2024? This chart breaks it down.

Voters forgive, forget, and ignore

Shekhar Narasimhan, one of the event’s organizers, said that while Biden may have had a rocky start to marking Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, which is observed in May, the comment barely registered for most event attendees this week. . Private fundraising.

“The way I heard it was contextual. He was drawing comparisons with Donald Trump, who wants to deport many millions including AAPIs, to say, ‘Look what happens when you’re a hater,'” said Narasimhan, an Indian immigrant and founder of the AAPI Victory Fund, a political action committee. For foreigners.”

He said Biden was “making comparisons with other countries that have more closed immigration systems.” “We haven’t heard from any Japanese Americans, or Indian Americans, saying, ‘Oh, what the hell did he say over there?’

Regarding India’s situation with other economies, he said he “does not understand the comment.”

See also  Peru: Castillo denies the accusations as Peru protests the high death toll

more: Why does Donald Trump keep calling President Biden “Obama” during his election campaign?

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said the “broader point” Biden was trying to make was that the United States is “a nation of immigrants — that’s in our DNA.”

While a high-profile error may have hurt a candidate in decades past, it does not have the same lasting impact, O’Reilly said.

“The news cycle moves so fast now that some other interesting news always comes to the rescue,” he said. “If President Biden characterizes Americans as xenophobes, the damage may continue, but it shouldn’t in this case. There are a lot of more interesting things happening.”

Podcast excerpt: Biden’s gaffes and Trump’s gaffes: Are they a sign of cognitive decline?

Biden’s comments came just three weeks after the White House hosted Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, where Biden praised the “unbreakable alliance” between the United States and Japan.

Hosted by the White House Indian Prime Minister Narenda Modi For a state visit last summer as part of its effort to foster deeper relations with the country as a counterweight to China.

“Our allies and partners know very well how much this president respects them,” Jean-Pierre said. “We obviously have a strong relationship with India and Japan.”

Liz Smith, a Democratic strategist, said gaffes matter when they reinforce a candidate’s existing weaknesses.

“When Mitt Romney described 47% of the country as assholes, it reinforced his image as completely out of touch with reality,” she added.

Contributing: Joey Garrison

sIbn Venugopal Ramaswamy is the White House correspondent for USA TODAY. You can follow her on X, formerly Twitter, @SwapnaVenugopal

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *