Mar 12, 2024 - Politics & Policy

Democrats play montage of Trump memory gaffes during Hur hearing

The top Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee opened Tuesday's hearing with former special counsel Robert Hur by playing a super-cut of gaffes and memory lapses by former President Trump.

Why it matters: Re-focusing the attention on Trump's mental faculties and criminal liability is central to Democrats' strategy for countering Hur's findings about Biden's poor memory, which Republicans see as a potent line of attack.

Driving the news: The Democratic montage begins with Trump boasting of having "one of the great memories of all time," before cutting to videos of the former president forgetting or mixing up several names.

  • That includes the role of Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, who Trump called "the great leader of Turkey" in October 2023.
  • The video also shows Trump repeatedly claiming at a rally that former GOP rival Nikki Haley was in charge of security on Jan. 6 — seemingly confusing her for former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).

What they're saying: "That is a man who is incapable of avoiding criminal liability, a man who is wholly unfit for office, and a man who — at the very least — ought to think twice before accusing others of cognitive decline," House Judiciary Chair Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) said after the video.

The big picture: In his five-hour interview with Hur, Biden repeatedly mixed up dates, countries and the timeline of significant events, including the years his son Beau died and Trump was elected.

  • The White House and Biden's Democratic allies have furiously pushed back against Hur's characterization of the president's memory, criticizing it as gratuitous and partisan.
  • Amid the high-profile hearing on Capitol Hill, Biden is packing his schedule with campaign travel and speeches as he seeks to capitalize on the shift in momentum following his energetic State of the Union speech.
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