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Clyburn: A Lot of Biden’s Gaffes Are His Stutter

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During CNN’s coverage of the South Carolina primary, Rep. James Clyburn defended President Biden against criticisms of his age and mental acuity.

Clyburn noted that Biden had struggled with a stutter his whole life, which caused some speech impediments, but that it has nothing to do with his brain function.

“Trump told that group of black conservatives that he was speaking to that ‘[Y]ou owe crooked Joe Biden absolutely nothing.’ He called President Biden racist. He attacked Biden for his role in the 1994 crime bill. You and I have spoken about your concern that black voters are not hearing enough about the good that, in your view, Joe Biden has done for the country and for the black community. Do you still have that concern?” Jake Tapper asked.

Clyburn argued that if Biden commits a occasional gaffe it should not be seen as evidence he is too old to be president, pointing to FDR who served multiple terms from a wheelchair.

“Well, when I see all the gaffes, Trump had some cue cards yesterday or last night and he couldn’t get his own wife’s name right. There’s something wrong with Trump. And we know there’s something wrong with Trump, all of that meandering that he was doing today, but never see any reporting on that,” Clyburn said.

“If Joe Biden commits a gaffe, a guy who stuttered all of his childhood, into his adulthood and everybody know[s] his stuttering is what caused a lot of his speech impediments, and we know that. It has nothing to do with his brain, he stumbles one time and everybody says, he’s too old to be the president,” he said.

Clyburn said FDR was able to think and lead in a way that benefited the country, unlike what he sees from Donald Trump, whose own speeches include mistakes and meandering.

Clyburn’s overall point was that a candidate’s physical limitations or occasional speaking errors should not define their fitness for the presidency.

“Look, we had a president of these United States, I saw the rankings the other day, who [was] in the top ten, and some people got him in the top three, Franklin Roosevelt was in a wheelchair. It didn’t bother his brand. He got elected president more often than anybody else in the history of the country,” he said.

“He ranks as being one of the best presidents we ever had, not because he was able to walk, but because he was able to think and do so in a way that benefits the American people, benefits this great country, keep[s] us moving toward a more perfect union, not the foolishness that we’re getting from Donald Trump.”

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