In a rare move, left-leaning NBC News Political Director Chuck Todd criticized Joe Biden Tuesday, claiming the chaotic abandonment of Afghanistan damaged the president’s purported image of political competency, especially compared to former President Donald Trump.
“I do think the biggest political fallout is competency,” the Meet the Press host explained. “Joe Biden’s greatest strength against Donald Trump in the campaign was the idea that he has been around the block, he knows what he’s doing, we’re facing this crisis with COVID, we need some basic competency back in government, no more chaos. He’s lost the competency high-marks that he was getting at one time, and that’s tough to get back.”
The assessment of Biden’s mishandling of Kabul’s fall to the Taliban occurred during a segment with MSNBC correspondent Hallie Jackson.
“Why were we so caught off guard here? Chuck, what do Afghans need to hear from the administration broadly this morning?” Jackson asked.
“From the point of view of Afghanistan, how long is this process of evacuating Afghans going to last, how open will we be to bringing out more Afghans who want out? Where are we going to take them? How is the process worked? Are we cutting red tape?” Todd replied.
Todd’s overarching assertion was prompted by Biden’s Monday remarks, where he took almost no responsibility for the ongoing debacle and instead laid blame on Trump, the Afghan government, their military, and even their citizenry.
“The big long-term question, why were we so unprepared for this moment? You can’t help but come to two sort of conflicting theories,” Todd continued. “I don’t know if we’re ever going to get an answer that is going to feel satisfying and goes to some combination of the president had his mind made up before he took the oath of office which direction he was going and the Pentagon, I think, they always thought they could buy more time and for whatever reason didn’t plan for every contingency.”
Even though much of the mainstream media has been openly critical of Biden, some partisans were irate over Todd’s comments.
The far-left Crooks and Liars website said Todd “used the most odious right-wing meme to attack President Biden’s decision to withdraw from Afghanistan.”
“It was never going to be pretty, unfortunately,” John Amato wrote. “But the Beltway media has an obsession for US dominance and when the pictures don’t look good — they pounce.”
Voters have noticed, with Biden reaching personal approval lows in daily tracking polls.
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