Ethics & Public Policy Center

The Joe Biden at Sunday’s Debate Should Terrify Donald Trump

Published in The Washington Post on March 16, 2020


Sunday night’s Democratic debate was billed as the best chance for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) to show he still has standing against former vice president Joe Biden. Instead, viewers were treated to something we have not seen throughout the year-long campaign: a truly masterful performance by Biden.

Biden’s debate performances to date had left a lot to be desired. He often gave rambling answers to simple questions. His energy noticeably faded the longer the debates went on. Combined with his many verbal slips on the campaign trail in recent weeks, this left many wondering if Biden had the acuity and stamina it would take to face Sanders alone.

He did, and then some. From the first minute to the last, Biden literally stood tall. While Sanders noticeably slouched, Biden stood ramrod-straight in a perfectly fitted suit. The body language alone sent a strong message that one candidate was vibrant while the other, though energetic, was elderly.

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