Less than six weeks before the election, one of the most profound disappointments among some of Joe Biden’s supporters is that he doesn’t even seem to be trying.
If some Democrats are correct, crushing “The Donald” should have been easy. After all (according to them), Trump is an impeached, sex-offending, tax-evading, white supremacist, coronavirus-mismanaging, sexist, racist, Islamophobic, homophobic, mysogynistic, sexist liar who is wildly unpopular. And Biden has long showed a hefty advantage in the polls.
If all of that’s true, then Biden need do little more than show up, and winning should be a piece of cake — a massive blowout.
But even to some of his cheerleaders, it feels like Biden hasn’t even been showing up. From March until the last week in August, according to news reports, Biden made no in-person speeches or campaign appearances at all.
On Thursday, President TrumpDonald John TrumpFederal prosecutor speaks out, says Barr ‘has brought shame’ on Justice Dept. Former Pence aide: White House staffers discussed Trump refusing to leave office Progressive group buys domain name of Trump’s No. 1 Supreme Court pick MORE stopped by the Supreme Court to pay respects to the late Justice Ruth Bader GinsburgRuth Bader GinsburgProgressive group buys domain name of Trump’s No. 1 Supreme Court pick Democratic senator to party: ‘A little message discipline wouldn’t kill us’ Lincoln Project mocks Lindsey Graham’s fundraising lag with Sarah McLachlan-themed video MORE, made a health-care policy speech in North Carolina, then flew to Jacksonville, Fla., for a giant campaign rally at the airport.
Biden? He had no public events on his calendar.
When Biden does get out, such as his visit to Charlotte, N.C.,, on Wednesday, it’s for low-key, understated events. His enthusiastic fans don’t come out by the thousands, hours in advance, lining the streets hoping to just catch a glimpse.
Yet, don’t allow some media reports to fool you. I try to watch most of the candidates’ events, and Biden is not the confused, befuddled old man glued to the teleprompter that some edited videos make him out to be. I, for one, anticipate he will largely appear informed and calm during the debates, as he does at his campaign appearances.
So why, exactly, the low profile?
On many days that should be his busiest, from a campaign standpoint, Biden’s often calling a “lid” in the mornings. That means the candidate is telling the media, in advance, that there will be no public events the rest of the day; the press can pack up and come back tomorrow. The calling of so many lids at a crucial phase of Campaign 2020 is naturally stoking rumors. A lid theoretically removes some of the prying eyes of the press from scrutinizing — well, whatever you may not want them to scrutinize. It keeps them from following you to — well, wherever you may not want to be followed.
If it were President Trump being so dialed back at this key stage, it likely would be the…