The Morning Briefing: Mainstream Media Hacks Will Have No Problem Pivoting Back to Biden

One of the few people with a literal front-row seat to be able to judge how well Joe Biden is performing since his disastrous debate appearance is ABC News Anchor George Stephanopoulos. He was the person granted the first post-debate interview with Biden, where the President performed a bit better than he did during the debate, but really not all that much. So what did Stephanopoulos personally think of the President’s cognitive abilities and whether or not he should still be running for a second term? Apparently he wasn’t impressed. He was caught on camera while walking in Manhattan this week when a random pedestrian asked him whether or not Biden should step down. He responded by saying that he doesn’t think that Biden can serve four more years. We should note up front that he did not say this in his official capacity as an ABC News anchor. (NY Post)

ABC News anchor George Stephanopoulos admitted Tuesday that he does not believe President Biden can serve out a second term — days after conducting a closely watched interview with the commander-in-chief following his disastrous debate performance against Donald Trump last month.

Stephanopoulos, 63, was recorded by TMZ answering a question from a passer-by about Biden’s political future in midtown Manhattan.

“Do you think Biden should step down?” the anonymous interrogator asked the “Good Morning America” co-host and “This Week” moderator. “You’ve talked to him more than anybody else has lately.”

“I don’t think he can serve four more years,” the soft-spoken Stephanopoulos responded after a pause.

Stephanopoulos almost immediately regretted answering the question, which is understandable. He said, “Earlier today I responded to a question from a passerby. I shouldn’t have.” ABC News initially didn’t have any comment on the exchange, but later came out to state that the anchor had “expressed his own point of view” and that it did not reflect the position of ABC. 

It would be easy enough to say that George Stephanopoulos simply screwed up by expressing such an opinion in public. After all, his professional occupation requires him to at least attempt to maintain the appearance of objectivity and a lack of bias. Also, he is a well-known television personality and he should clearly be aware that no matter where you go in public these days, somebody is going to be filming whatever is going on with their cell phones. Perhaps he was just distracted in the moment.

But at the same time, he’s a thinking, breathing human being. He clearly must have opinions of his own. His previous history as an apparatchik of the Clintons suggests that he leans heavily toward the Democrats and liberals, most likely including Joe Biden. He had the chance to sit down for nearly half an hour with the President and question him directly while observing the responses he received. How would he not come away with the impression that Joe Biden is a cognitive mess who will be lucky to make it through the next four months, to say nothing of four more years beyond that? That’s the impression being held by most people, including those in Biden’s own party.

I tuned in to ABC News for a little while this morning to see how they are handling the situation. They don’t seem to be talking about it very much. There almost seems to be a sense of resignation in the air. Most of their on-air staff would no doubt likely be cheering for Joe Biden, but he’s still not capable of generating much enthusiasm among the normally loyal press pool. It appears increasingly likely that Biden will simply refuse to step aside and release his delegates. And if that’s the case, the left is probably stuck with him for better or worse. And “worse” is looking more and more likely based on Donald Trump’s most recent poll numbers. Here’s to hoping those numbers hold all the way through to November.

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