On Tuesday, Joe Biden’s campaign launched an ad touting the former vice president’s ability to fill the role of “commander in chief.” In the ad, Biden touts his ability to “stand with our allies,” and “know them by their first names.” Ironically, the ad shows Biden with German Chancellor Angela Merkel while the former VP says “know them by their first names.”
This may have been a dig at President Donald Trump, who once referred to the German chancellor as simply “Merkel.” But it only highlights one of Biden’s many gaffes. The Democrat once mixed up the German chancellor with the late former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.
“You had people like Margaret Tha… excuse me,” Biden said at a campaign event in Des Moines, Iowa, in August 2019. Speaking about Trump’s remarks after the white nationalist riots in Charlottesville, Va., he added, “You had people like the former chairman and the leader of the party in Germany. You had Angela Merkel stand up and say how terrible it was. International leaders looked at us like, ‘what in God’s name is happening to the United States of America?'”
This was not the first time Biden had referred to a modern female leader as Margaret Thatcher. He once mixed up Thatcher and then British Prime Minister Theresa May, as well.
If a candidate needs to be able to know allies like Angela Merkel by their first names in order to be commander in chief, then Biden’s mix-up undercuts his candidacy, and his ad ironically highlights his embarrassing gaffe. The fact that his campaign showed a picture of Angela Merkel at that very moment in the ad is just icing on the cake.
Follow Tyler O’Neil, the author of this article, on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.