Debate Takeaways For Israel

There was nothing remotely surprising about U.S. President Joe Biden’s performance at the presidential debate in Atlanta on Thursday night. The doddering, muttering, angry and seemingly confused man staring emptily, with mouth agape who stood on the CNN debate stage was the same man who has shown up before the cameras nearly every day since Biden was sworn into office on Jan. 20, 2021.

The Democratic commentators on CNN and the other Democratic Party-aligned media could have pretended that there was nothing off about Biden’s performance. They have been doing that for the past three-and-a-half years. The question is why they chose to respond to the debate by unanimously panning his performance. Why did every single CNN commentator insist that Biden cannot continue as the Democratic candidate for president?

The second question is: What does this mean for Israel?

On the first question, it has been clear from the outset that American voters like neither former President Donald Trump nor Biden. The race has always hinged on who it’s about. Would it be a referendum on Trump or Biden? If it is a referendum on Biden, then Trump wins and vice-versa. Trump was leading going into the debate because until Thursday night, Biden’s efforts to make the race a referendum on Trump had come up short.

The commentators’ immediate condemnation of the president’s performance and the widespread reports of “panic” among the Democratic Party leadership from the first moments of the debate made clear that the party’s leadership decided that the race was indeed a referendum on Biden. If he is the candidate on the ballot in November, then Trump will be the next president.

Since the Democrats don’t want that, having made the race a referendum on Biden, the only move left is for Biden to be forced to step aside and for someone else to be selected as the party’s nominee at the Democratic convention in Chicago in late August.

Whether Biden’s replacement is former first lady Michelle Obama, California Gov. Gavin Newsom or Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro, the nominee will immediately become the hands-down favorite to win in November. Untainted by the president’s baggage as an incumbent, his replacement will be able to make the race a referendum on Trump, and he or she will win.

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AUTHOR

Caroline Glick

Caroline B. Glick is a Senior Fellow with the Center for Security Policy. She is a senior columnist at Israel Hayom and the author of The Israeli Solution: A One-State Plan for Peace in the Middle East, (Crown Forum, 2014). From 1994 to 1996, she served as a core member of Israel’s negotiating team with the Palestine Liberation Organization.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Center for Security Policy column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

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