Home News Biden Wrongly Roasts Trump Over Melania-Mercedes Name Swap

Biden Wrongly Roasts Trump Over Melania-Mercedes Name Swap


Photo: AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Joe Biden swung by Late Night With Seth Meyers on Monday night, ostensibly to celebrate the show’s tenth anniversary but actually to demonstrate that he’s not way too old to be president for another four years.

Did it work? Well, sort of. Biden came off fine — for a guy who’s 81 years old. People looking for more evidence that the president is, in fact, super-old could note that he looked and sounded far less peppy than he did a few years ago. Biden also made some minor flubs, like trailing off and stopping himself twice while discussing Donald Trump and referring to his “2020 agenda” when he meant 2024. But defenders could take solace in his ability to coherently discuss serious topics, like infrastructure and the Israel-Hamas conflict, and deliver a few jokes without any major gaffes.

Biden was clearly looking to reinforce his campaign’s messaging that yeah, he’s old, but “old beats crazy” — and it’s not like he’s running against some whippersnapper. He attacked Trump, without saying his name, by noting that he’s about the same age (77) and you can definitely tell.

“You got to take a look at the other guy,” Biden said. “He’s about as old as I am, but he can’t remember his wife’s name.”

Biden was referring to a moment during Trump’s CPAC speech on Saturday when he reacted to the crowd clapping for his wife, Melania, by saying, “Wow, Mercedes, that’s pretty good!”

Seth Meyers played the clip during his monologue (at the 45 second below). “I’m sorry, Mercedes?!” the host said. “You had a nuclear meltdown when Biden messed up the president of Egypt and you can’t remember your wife’s name? Guys, I hate to say it: His mind is slipping. I think he’s too old to run.”

Obviously, Meyers and Biden were making jokes, not delivering a news report or a press conference. But it was still weird to focus so much on Trump forgetting his wife’s name since it’s not true.

On Saturday, X users accused Trump of calling Melania “Mercedes,” and that story was picked up by a few news outlets. But within hours it was clear that Trump was actually talking to Mercedes Schlapp, his former White House adviser, who was in the audience. Her husband, Matt Schlapp, leads the American Conservative Union, which runs CPAC, and Trump addressed both of the Schlapps at another point in the speech.

“The clips were taken out of context by disingenuous people,” Trump spokesman Steven Cheung told the New York Times.

Biden’s Late Night appearance was probably targeted at people who are only casually following the 2024 election, not very online X users who were glued to the “Trump doesn’t know his wife’s name” drama as it unfolded. And Biden lobbed a more substantive age-related criticism at Trump, too.

“It’s about how old your ideas are,” he said. “Look, this is a guy who wants to take us back. He wants to take us back on Roe v. Wade. He wants to take us back on a whole range of issues that are — 50, 60 years, they’ve been solid American positions.”

But why build a joke around a claim that is actually fake news? It’s not like there aren’t plenty of other examples of Trump making incoherent statements. As the Times noted, he’s made confusing statements about his wives in the past:

Still, Mr. Trump has in the past misspelled Melania’s name on Twitter as “Melanie.” And during a deposition in the defamation case brought by E. Jean Carroll, Mr. Trump mistakenly identified a picture of Ms. Carroll as Marla Maples, his second wife. A jury found that Mr. Trump sexually abused Ms. Carroll in the 1990s, and a separate jury ordered him to pay $83.3 million for defaming her.

A few weeks ago, Trump claimed magnets don’t work underwater! And at another point in Saturday’s CPAC speech, Trump actually did flub his words, making it sound like he was endorsing Biden for president.

There’s really no excuse for the Biden team undermining their point by repeating a false allegation when they had mountains of actually incoherent Trump content to choose from.

See All

Source link

Related Posts