US President Joe Biden should be glad there are no charges on his record. But now the focus is on something else.

United States President Joe Biden in the reception room of the White House, Thursday, February 8, 2024, in Washington.

“My memory is fine”: US President Joe Biden in the reception room of the White House on February 8, 2024 Photo: Evan Vucci/ap

The difficult choice that the United States will face in November has become unusually clear in recent days. On the one hand, Republican Donald Trump is a presidential candidate who promises to introduce a dictatorship and ban all climate protection measures of his government. Opposite him is the incumbent Democrat Joe Biden, who is currently increasingly acquiring the status of an old fool.

On Thursday, US President Joe Biden received what at first glance seemed like good news: Special investigator Robert Hur will not press charges in the matter of secret government files and memoranda found in his home. In his final report on the investigation, Hur concluded that Biden did not act with criminal intent. However, the special investigator justifies his legal reluctance by referring to Biden's significantly limited memory.

In interviews, it is said that Biden no longer knew when he was vice president of the US (under Barack Obama) or when his son Beau died. “We also considered,” the report says, “that Mr. Biden would likely present himself to the jury in court as a likeable, well-intentioned older man with a poor memory.”

Based on direct interactions with him and his observations, Hur fears the jury could give the benefit of the doubt to a Biden defendant. “It would be difficult to convince a jury to convict him; condemn him – a former president in his eighties – for a serious crime that requires a premeditated state of mind.”

Dropouts are increasing

Biden reacted angrily to this characterization of his personality with a spontaneous press conference. In a nationally televised speech from the White House, he said, “My memory is fine.”

He underwent interviews for five hours each on October 8 and 9, 2023, “while managing an international crisis.” These were the days immediately following the Hamas attack on Israel. And when asked about the anniversary of Beau's death, she simply thought, “That's none of their business.” “How the hell dare you,” Biden said of Robert Hur, “mention that? I don't need anyone to remind me when he died.”

When Biden came back down from the podium, he was asked about the situation in Israel and Gaza. He then mentioned the role of the President of Mexico and not, as would be correct, of the President of Egypt.

It wasn't the first mistake last week. At a campaign event in New York on Wednesday, Biden told an anecdote from the G7 summit almost three years ago and confused Angela Merkel with Helmut Kohl.

In the circle of politicians, Biden then said: “America is back.” The French president responded: “For how long?” And Kohl then said, “What would you say, Mr. President, if you met tomorrow morning? London Times “Would you take it in your hand and discover that 1,000 people broke down the doors of the British Parliament and killed some people along the way?” Merkel had been Chancellor for 16 years at the time.

Trump also has memory lapses

At a campaign event in Las Vegas the previous Sunday, Biden confused French President Macron with former French President Mitterrand while recounting the same episode. On the White House home page there is a transcript of the event that says ominously: “And Mitterrand (crossed out), Macron of Germany – I mean France – looked at him and asked…”

Biden, just a few years older than Donald Trump, is in good company when it comes to these mistakes. Donald Trump recently confused his rival Nikki Haley with Democrat Nancy Pelosi.