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Biden’s secret weapon in previous national debates may again be a factor during showdown with Trump

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Biden's secret weapon in previous national debates may again be a factor during showdown with Trump

Amid the circulation of videos on social media in recent weeks which appear to show President Biden’s mental acuity dwindling and a recent Wall Street Journal report adding fuel to the speculation, low expectations for his performance ahead of the debate next week against former President Trump could buck his chance of victory.

And Trump may be helping Biden set expectations low by dinging him on his age and acuity in recent interviews. Trump has called for Biden to be drug tested prior to taking the debate stage, saying that if he does well it will be due to performance enhancements.

“If he’s standing, they’ll say it was a brilliant performance,” Trump said at the National Rifle Association (NRA) Convention last month in Dallas.

 

Biden's secret weapon in previous national debates may again be a factor during showdown with Trump

However, “low expectations” will be used to Biden’s advantage, according to one expert.

“I’d be wary of assuming that Biden’s going to have a bad performance, or of talking down his potential performance because he has surpassed expectations at the 2020 debate, at the State of the Union address, and at the press conference where they were talking about his mental acuity,” presidential historian and author Tevi Troy told Fox News Digital.

“That doesn’t mean he’s always all there, and I fully recognize that he is not the person he was in 2012 when he debated very effectively against Paul Ryan,” added Troy, who served as a senior HHS official in the President George W. Bush administration. “But when you lower the expectations of your opponent’s performance, it’s easy for the opponent to exceed those expectations strategically. It’s something to worry about.”

Thursday’s presidential debate will be the first between the GOP and Democratic frontrunners, since neither Trump nor Biden participated in party primary debates – a first in several decades.

Troy, also a senior researcher at the Bipartisan Policy Center think tank, believes the real problem for Biden next week “is it’s easy to run against Trump when Trump’s in office, but now Biden’s in office and people are still unhappy with one situation.”

“They’re unhappy with the illegal immigration, they’re unhappy with inflation, and they’re unhappy with the sense that Biden doesn’t have it and doesn’t know what’s going on or isn’t on top of his game. So, the ‘memory campaign’ is a bit of a hard thing to pull off in this circumstance,” he said.

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