Former White House aide and CNN contributor David Axelrod on Friday criticized President Biden for snapping at a reporter for the network who earlier asked about concerns regarding his memory and age.
“Donald Trump is a gaffe-machine himself, but because he is energetic these questions are not as profound for him,” Axelrod said Friday.
More concerning, Axelrod said of Biden, “was the way he reacted to [CNN reporter] MJ [Lee] when she asked a question, that was completely legitimate, which is what are you going to do about the fact that so many people have this question, and he snapped at her.”
During a contentious back-and-forth with reporters Thursday evening, Biden forcefully pushed back on assertions made by a special counsel report in regard to his memory of key elements of his life and political career.
Biden said his memory is “fine” and insisted he is “the most qualified person in this country to be President of the United States” and is determined to “finish the job” he started.
He brushed away a question from Lee about polling showing concerns about his age, calling it a matter of “judgement.”
“It’s the opinion of a lot of Americans who only see you in front of a camera,” Axelrod said of Biden. “They don’t see you in the situation room. They don’t see you in these closed-door meetings. And they are drawing their conclusions from what they see.”
Axelrod said the Biden reelection campaign has “to strategize around that,” and noted, “I’m not sure that putting him in front of a group of hungry reporters shouting at him is the necessarily the best way for him to communicate.”
“They need to figure how to use him, when to use,” Axelrod said. “But it’s a big problem.”
Updated: 6:38 p.m.