We write a lot here about the rambling incoherence and odd staring often displayed by President Biden during scripted press conferences and other public appearances he makes where his handlers frequently intervene in bizarre ways and sometimes even upstage him.
And while that's obviously very concerning to many Americans when one considers the fact that he is the leader of the free world, it's equally worrying when it comes from the second person in the presidential line of succession – House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
Take a look at what she said below during a press briefing late last week when she was asked “Why hasn't the House acted on that bill about Uyghur oppression, and do you think that it will?”
Can you make heads or tails of it? I can't:
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) December 2, 2021
Even the “cleaned up” version of the transcript posted by Pelosi's office doesn't help much (it's missing several of the awkward pauses, which I added back in), but here it is anyway:
So, we have a bill in the House. It's the McGovern bill, a stronger bill than the [confusion] it's a bill that we could have freestanding or bill in the EAGLE Act that is part of the [confusion, long pauses and awkward laughter] Foreign Affairs Committee. Mr. Kendrick Meeks – no, Gregory Meeks' bill. Kendrick – we are all very sad about losing Carrie Meek this week, so I referenced her son. But Chairman Meeks' bill in the House. So, we will have that.
But, you see, in a defense – [in a] bill, whether it's in the whatever that thing's called that they have in the Senate, or in a DOD bill, the Senate does not have the right to have a revenue or an appropriations matter.
I get it that sometimes people have so much on their plate that it's easy to forget names, places, things, stumble on a word or two. But that was just painful. A trainwreck. A genuinely concerning moment.
When I see things like this (and the Biden video), I assume what's happening is age-related. And it makes me wonder if maximum age limits should be put on who can serve in the House, Senate, and White House. But if we did that then there would be some highly effective people who are on up in age who would either be disqualified from running or who would have to bow out at a certain point due to the age limit.
As far as Pelosi's concerned, it may be that if Democrats get trounced in 2022 she decides to hang it up altogether. Rumors are already swirling to that effect. But even if she didn't retire, her being out of the Speaker's chair would be a welcome relief for many reasons, not just the fact that she appears to have big coherency problems. The good news is that even if Republicans don't retake the House next year, Pelosi has said that this will be her last go-round with the Speaker's gavel.
Hopefully, though, Republicans will regain control, which would ensure that Pelosi's promise to step down as Speaker doesn't get a chance to get tested. Because enough's enough already.