The Cocktail Party Contrarian: What Kind of a Man Is Joe Biden?

The president isn’t thinking about his troubled son, Hunter. His concern is for himself and for his image.

AP/Charles Krupa
President Biden at Auburn, Maine, July 28, 2023. AP/Charles Krupa

In the 2020 presidential election, many Americans were advised to ask themselves one central question before casting their votes: What kind of a man did they want to see in the White House? As it was presented to the public, the choice was a moral one: between the devil incarnate, Donald Trump, and the nice guy, Joe Biden. How voters answered the question determined not only what kind of human being the candidate was deemed to be, but what kind of human beings the voters were as well. 

Lots of people I know voted for Mr. Biden after using this method of candidate evaluation. Almost three years later, allegations of the Biden family’s corruption are reaching the public, and many who thought they made the righteous choice are now seeing that the entire construct was false. Whatever one’s beliefs about President Trump, no one who supported President Biden can any longer claim they “went high.” 

His deficits are not just the standard political ones associated with unbridled greed and lust for power. They are a stunning array of character stains that the American people were told he didn’t have. It turns out there are no saints.

The question of “what kind of a man — or woman” one wants in the White House never was a question at all, but rather an accusation used to shame the opposition. Those who asked it of Trump voters forgot, or wanted to ignore, their own support of people like Hillary Clinton. They eagerly consumed the media narrative about good-guy Joe without regard to the veracity of the claim, just so the designation of his rival as evil would stick. 

They never asked, as columnist Miranda Devine did on Megyn Kelly’s show a few weeks ago, the obvious question: “What kind of a father puts his addicted son in front of gushing torrents of unaccountable cash?” 

One answer is a father who wanted to get rich, but that’s not the whole answer. Americans tend to rationalize away the behavior of politicians who chase fame and fortune, because all of them seem to do it. Yet how many would use their broken, addicted, unstable child to pursue self-interest, knowing the toll it would take on his soul? What kind of a man is that? No one seemed to ask this about Mr. Biden — or wanted to.

Now we do. The idea of Joe Biden as a nice guy isn’t an easy sell anymore. He isn’t the light side of Donald Trump’s dark moon. What kind of a man is he?

He is the kind of man who would be married to the kind of woman who would allow her husband to run for president knowing full well that he had entered the early stages of mental decline. What kind of wife watches as her husband humiliates himself daily in front of the entire world? Perhaps the kind of wife who saw her husband similarly leverage his own son for position and power, without regard for his well-being. Perhaps she understood that in the Biden family, when it comes to ambition, anything goes.

He is the kind of man who, in an attempt to prove himself as pure as his handlers said he was, would announce, as he did last Thursday, that he would not pardon his son Hunter if convicted. Joe Biden has crossed too many ethical lines to count, both as a politician and a father, but the one he won’t cross is the one that would spare his son from prison. 

Ironically, this is the only ethical line every parent in America would forgive the president for crossing and would cross themselves to save their children from fallout they had a hand in creating. Yet Mr. Biden isn’t thinking about his son. His concern is for himself and for his image. He wants the American people to know that while he was willing to use nepotism to send Hunter around the world for cash, he is too proper and correct to use nepotism to protect him from the consequences of that grift.  

What kind of a man is that?

The New York Sun

© 2024 The New York Sun Company, LLC. All rights reserved.

Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. The material on this site is protected by copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used.

The New York Sun

Sign in or  create a free account

By continuing you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use