March 2, 2024

Is it frustration? Something deeper, or more shallow? I woke up this morning to see that the front page of the Times has five stories above the virtual fold. All five were about Joe Biden’s memory, press conference, special counsel report. Full news day, I guess. Yesterday I noticed the Times’ Astead Herndon on this on Twitter. He is not some slightly younger version of David Broder. He’s a pretty new entrant to the upper echelon of elite DC news media. I think he graduated from college as Trump’s first campaign was getting underway. But the acculturation appears complete. After Hur’s report dropped he wrote that despite questions about Biden’s age being “the most impt non-Trump issue in this elec[tion]” the DC press corps has “a sorta gentleman’s agreement for the last year to pretend like it’s not. Maybe that ends now.”

Am I taking crazy pills here? Do I have dementia? I think it’s fair to say that at least a third of the political chatter about President Biden for the last year, and quite possibly half of it, is about the President’s age. But maybe the omertà is about to end? I’m still trying to process the idea that a top Washington reporter really thinks there’s been some kind of fix-is-in ban on discussing the President’s age.

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