President Joe Biden continues to exude weakness in the face of Russian aggression. On Monday, as Soviet strongman Vladimir Putin was massing troops on the Ukrainian border, the American president was groveling to a 34-year-old journalist he insulted at a press conference.
"What a stupid son of a bitch," Biden grumped in response to a question from Peter Doocy, the White House correspondent for Fox News. Doocy had asked whether Biden viewed runaway inflation as a "political liability" heading into the 2022 midterm elections. The president responded that it was an "asset" and called for "more inflation."
Biden could have signaled strength and confidence by refusing to feel bad about berating the lowly journalist. Alas, our president chose a different course. Biden called Doocy an hour later and "cleared the air," telling the kid reporter, "It's nothing personal, pal."
Doocy said he "appreciated" the "nice call" from the commander in chief, but explained that Biden's groveling was unnecessary and perhaps unbecoming of a world leader. "I don't need anybody to apologize to me," the lowly journalist said. "He can call me whatever he wants as long as it gets him talking."
Meanwhile, the American president's approach to Russian aggression in Ukraine has been similarly weak. For example, Biden suggested at a recent press conference that a "minor incursion" by Putin's forces would be an acceptable outcome that would not warrant a forceful response from the United States and her allies. His refusal to nominate a U.S. ambassador to Ukraine also reeks of cowardice.
Biden's timid leadership, not to mention his personal fragility, has not gone unnoticed by the American people. According to the RealClearPolitics polling average, just 41 percent of Americans approve of his job performance, compared with 55 percent who disapprove. A recent NBC News poll found that fewer than one in three Americans gave Biden a positive rating when it comes to his leadership qualities and ability to handle a crisis.
If our president doesn't have what it takes to stand up to a journalist, there's no reason to believe he'll have the strength required to stand up to Putin.