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Democrats have treated Joe Biden just as bad as Robert Hur and Marjorie Taylor Greene have

USA President Joe Biden selfie Kristen Gillibrand New York Joyce Beatty OHIO arrives State of the Union address Willie Stargell Pittsburgh Pirates game 4 1979 World Series
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images; George Gojkovich/Getty Images

OK, he’s old, and he gets it, but “Pops” Biden has what it takes to lead us to victory in November, and we need to stop complaining about him – now!

It’s crystal clear that when you read the transcript of President Joe Biden’s interview with Special Counsel Robert Hur, the original characterization was way, way off. Biden does not come across as some sympathetic old man.

And during Hur’s testimony yesterday in front of the House Judiciary Committee, Democratic California Rep. Ted Lieu zeroed in on pointing out the distinction between Biden’s document dilemma and Donald Trump’s. Biden did not intentionally steal the documents, did not lie to the FBI about them, did not tell his lawyer to destroy them, and did not share them with strangers.

In other words, Biden did nothing wrong – except to Hur, who felt Biden’s mistake was that he was too old. Democratic California Rep. Adam Schiff cleared that up right away. Biden was not a doddering old fool. Hur was trying to score political points and obfusicate the fact that he wasn’t charging Biden with a crime and that Hur was not naive enough to think that his elder accusation wouldn’t cause a firestorm.

Yet, in the interim, between yesterday and when Hur’s findings came in early February, the media – and many of us – followed Hur down the rabbit hole of Biden as a forgetful old man. We should be ashamed of ourselves.

When Biden stopped in his tracks and squared up against GOP Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene in the aisle on the House floor Thursday night on his way ascending to the rostrum to give his speech, I had an epiphany. The abysmally rude Greene pointed in his face and griped at him, not giving him the respect that he, as our president, deserves.

We naysayers in the Democratic Party, myself included, are no better than Greene in the way we’ve been harshly treating Biden.

Biden handled Greene deftly, while she looked ridiculously out of place in herhat, buttons, and other paraphernalia. And when she insolently screamed at him while he was giving his speech, he took her on again and made her look like the low-life that she is.

The way Greene treated Biden is a metaphor for the poor way many of us in the Democratic Party have been treating a president who excels at his job. We have looked foolish, complaining about what he hasn’t done, what he needs to do, and more urgently, how old he is — because if Biden wasn’t old, his approval rating would be soaring.

Like Greene, we’ve been sticking our finger in the eye of a man who is giving it all he’s got, who is firmly on the right side of history, and who is not finished. And we need to give him his due.

Remember just how bad things were in 2020? Biden rescued us from COVID, turned us away from a recession, reengaged us on climate, and returned America to its rightful place at the forefront of global affairs. He put our transportation system back on track and reversed the rot that Donald Trump had instilled in our government.

All of this, and more is, as Biden himself might say, “a big f**king deal!” I daresay no one in this country was better suited, when it comes to the temperament and experience, than Biden to right America’s ship after Trump crashed it into an iceberg. Biden has been denied the credit he so richly deserves because of one factor – and it really is only one factor – that the chattering class says he’s too old.

For the past few months, I’ve been nodding my head in agreement with the James Carvilles and David Axelrods of the political pundit class who have been saying Biden needs to step aside because he’s too old. I’ve been rolling my eyes and having misgivings about his miscues and missteps. I’ve been looking for ways to validate my own fears about his age.

Though it was just one speech and one moment in time, Biden hit a home run last week. He soared. But Biden’s been soaring all along. We’ve been trying to shoot him out of the air as if he were some dried-up old clay pigeon in a skeet shooting match. Biden is 100 percent iron. And try as we might, we ain’t going to shoot him down.

If he suddenly dropped out of the air and went away, I would miss him. We all would. As the old saying goes, you never realize the value of something until it’s gone.

Some Democrats said he hasn’t gone far enough with condemning Israel about its attacks on Gaza, but the alternative would be Trump, and if you think he’d be pushing for peace, you would be sadly mistaken. Trump is about war, tyranny, oppression, and bombs. Diplomacy is not in his vocabulary.

Some Democrats say he hasn’t done enough to address the border. He helped negotiate a bipartisan bill in the Senate that was killed because Trump thinks the border mess is to his advantage. Trump had four years to fix the border. He did nothing except make it worse and put up a few sections of a useless wall – that Mexico did not pay for.

Thursday night, many of us in the LGBTQ+ community said that Biden gave us only lip service with one sentence that included supporting the Equality Act and having the back of the trans community.

I have a message to my queer brothers and sisters: Trump would have not even acknowledged us. Has Trump ever spoken out on our behalf? Would Trump push for the Equality Act? And remember this, Trump once said that he wanted to “defeat the cult of gender ideology.” Is that having the back of the trans community?

President Biden has done more for us than any other president or vice president in history. He has always had our backs. Sadly, Republicans have never even tried to have our backs. They back away from us at every opportunity.

The Democratic Party has a very vast and broad constituency. In order for us to move forward – to win – we have to make compromises for the greater good. We have to understand that we don’t always get everything we want in this era of hyper self-satisfaction. Trump is all about self. About selfishness. Biden, in his own way, is about selflessness – let me explain.

Do you think that a man his age would rather have the most difficult job in the world or be sitting at his beach house and enjoying a well-deserved life of leisure? The answer is obvious, and that Biden has chosen the former is selfless.

I’ve been to a couple State of the Unions and watched them all for almost 40 years. At the end of the speech, the president usually exits quickly, up the middle aisle. The selfless and humble Biden is always the last person in the room to leave. Giving a speech like that is exhausting, and sticking around to listen, to take photos, and to glad-hand goes above and beyond.

Biden dispels any doubts about his fitness every day in the job that he’s doing. He can go the distance.

In 1979, the Pittsburgh Pirates had a scrappy baseball team that was led by its first baseman, 39-year-old Willie Stargell. He was ancient in baseball years, overweight, tired and at the end of his career. He was called “Pops” by his teammates because of his age.

A baseball season is long, 162 games from April through October. Starting late in the season, when everyone else was tired, “Pops” rallied, carried the Pirates on his old back, and led them to an improbable World Series victory.

President Biden is at the end of his career. He’s old. He’s probably a little tired too. Who wouldn’t be? There’s a long campaign season ahead. It will be grueling, and Biden will surely have misstatements and missteps. But we need to trust that “Pops” Biden has what it takes to put us on his back and lead us to victory.

And we need to be there to support our “very young, energetic, and handsome” president!

John Casey is a senior editor at The Advocate.

Views expressed in The Advocate’s opinion articles are those of the writers and do not necessarily represent the views of The Advocate or our parent company, equalpride.

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John Casey

John Casey is a senior editor of The Advocate, writing columns about political, societal, and topical issues with leading newsmakers of the day. John spent 30 years working as a PR professional on Capitol Hill, Hollywood, the United Nations and with four large U.S. retailers.
John Casey is a senior editor of The Advocate, writing columns about political, societal, and topical issues with leading newsmakers of the day. John spent 30 years working as a PR professional on Capitol Hill, Hollywood, the United Nations and with four large U.S. retailers.