During the Democrat debate Thursday night, Joe Biden randomly began to stutter while talking about mentoring young people. He pointed out that it is something he has struggled with personally and he is proud of his involvement with others who do. This part of the debate brought about a comment from Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the former White House press secretary. She mocked him in a tweet. Cue the outrage mob.
I didn’t watch the debate. I did see the video clip. His imitation of stuttering was odd but, let’s face it, what is a Democrat debate without some weirdness from Uncle Joe? Sarah Sanders was watching, apparently, and she posted a tweet that set the left on fire. Suddenly everyone was very protective of Biden.
Sanders wrote in a since-deleted tweet, “I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I hhhave absolutely no idea what Biden is talking about,” as the debate was wrapping up.
The former vice president, who himself overcame a longtime stuttering problem, had been discussing children who suffer from the same disorder when he made the stumble.
Cory Booker’s national press secretary weighed in:
This is the most disgusting tweet of the night. https://t.co/97tcGjsWW4
— Sabrina Singh (@sabrinasingh24) December 20, 2019
A Biden campaign staffer had an opinion, too:
An insultingly stupid whopper from Sarah Huckabee Sanders – now I've seen everything. https://t.co/PkDn5yBAth
— Andrew Bates (@AndrewBatesNC) December 20, 2019
You get the picture. Sanders deleted the tweet in the midst of the blowback. She posted a follow-up tweet to the first one, explaining it was not meant to mock a speech impediment. It was too late by then, though, so she deleted it, too.
Amid the flurry of criticism, Sanders followed up with another since-deleted tweet claiming she was not “trying to make fun of anyone with a speech impediment.”
But she took another jab at Biden, ending the tweet by saying, “Simply pointing out I can’t follow much of anything Biden is talking about.”
And, Joe Biden (or a staffer running his social media accounts) responded, and it turned into a plea for donations.
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) December 20, 2019
All of this led up to Sarah Sanders apparently finally recognizing the problem here and she apologized. She chalked it up to not knowing he was a stutterer.
I actually didn’t know that about you and that is commendable. I apologize and should have made my point respectfully. https://t.co/fbmVAqDoWI
— Sarah Huckabee Sanders (@SarahHuckabee) December 20, 2019
I admit I was a little surprised that Sanders weighed in as she did during the debate. She’s not new here. She grew up in the world of politics and is likely to run for office herself. She’s smart and able to hold her own. Also, despite being under constant attack, even on a personal level, for her tenure as White House press secretary, she isn’t known to be one who makes criticism into personal attacks.
So, I have to think that she really didn’t know that Biden has a history of stuttering. I find that believable because I only recently learned about that myself. At 37 years old, Sarah is a lot younger than me. I’ve been a political nerd for decades so I don’t have any difficulty believing her excuse. I think she was confused about the randomness of his impersonation of a person stuttering. Who among us hasn’t been confused by good old Joe?
The haters were quick to turn their criticism of Sanders and her tweet into a personal attack. Hillary Clinton’s communications person implied that Sarah is a mean drunk.
I mentioned Sarah was buzzed because in my experience, alcohol tends to make social settings a bit friendlier, even w/ politics involved. Not for Sarah! Folks were avoiding her like the plague. Turns out there ain’t even enough alcohol to forget defending mass child abuse.
— Charlotte Clymer 🏳️🌈 (@cmclymer) December 20, 2019
A member of The Resistance in the entertainment industry went after Sarah’s Christianity. The Christianity Today editorial was included.
Very Christian of you, Sarah, but did you not get the memo? https://t.co/8srkkHSMg6
— 🏝 Kim (@kim) December 20, 2019
The indignant leftists attack Sarah Sanders while conveniently putting aside their own behavior toward her during her time in the Trump administration. I don’t remember a White House press secretary being treated so shabbily simply because of the White House press corps preference for Democrat presidents. They all but high fived Obama’s press secretaries while turning a blind eye to Obama’s actions for eight years. Suddenly they awoke out of their slumber when Trump was inaugurated. Remember the eight years of being told how stupid George W. Bush is and what a wimp his father was in office? Sarah was run out of restaurants while accompanied by her family and she was the butt of ugly “jokes” at the White House Correspondents dinner. I’d say she fought off any inclination to jump ugly on the other side of the aisle admirably.
I expect that Sarah will have to answer questions about her tweet when she runs for office in the future. It is rumored that she has her eye on running for Governor of Arkansas in 2022. Do I think Arkansas voters will be upset with her? No. Arkansas is Huckabee territory and she is popular there. The Resistance has been unrelenting in its harsh tone and words about President Trump and his administration. Sanders wasn’t playing into that here, though. It looks like an honest mistake, though if she had succumbed to a snarky slap at Biden, most of us would certainly understand why she did. She’s as human as anyone else.