Texas Senators John Cornyn (R-TX) and Ted Cruz (R-TX) questioned Monday whether President Joe Biden is “really in charge,” as his “public comments are largely scripted.”
“The president is not doing cable news interviews. Tweets from his account are limited and, when they come, unimaginably conventional. The public comments are largely scripted. Biden has opted for fewer sit down interviews with mainstream outlets and reporters,” Cornyn tweeted before adding, “Invites the question: is he really in charge?”
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) retweeted Cornyn’s question, “I have no idea what you’re talking about,” he said in jest to pile on in agreement.
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) April 12, 2021
Biden on March 25 held his first solo press conference of his presidency after 54 days — a 100-year record — resulting in several awkward moments which included disclosing a list of a few specific reporters he was to call on for questions.
Biden’s press conference cheat sheet with headshots of reporters — Why are some of the squares crossed out? pic.twitter.com/H1Pru1GACu
— Charlie Spiering (@charliespiering) March 26, 2021
White House chief of staff Ron Klain ridiculed media demands for Biden to hold a press conference. Klain even “shared a post from former Hillary Clinton adviser on social media mocking the idea that Biden would have a press conference,” Breitbart reported. But at the time of the event, a poll showed 52 percent of voters were worried Biden had not held a solo press conference.
Jonathan Allen, NBC News senior political analyst, said of Biden’s press conference performance that he looked “tired.”
Biden sounding and looking tired partway through.
— Jonathan Allen (@jonallendc) March 25, 2021
Furthermore, Biden’s “unimaginably conventional” Twitter account mirrors the carefulness the White House is displaying with Biden’s media interactions. For example, his Twitter handle recently elucidated the following thoughts:
It matters whether you continue to wear a mask.
It matters whether you continue to socially distance.
It matters whether you wash your hands.
It all matters and can help save lives.
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) March 14, 2021
Gun violence in this country is an epidemic — and it’s long past time Congress take action.
— President Biden (@POTUS) April 10, 2021
Clean drinking water is infrastructure. The American Jobs Plan will improve our water infrastructure by replacing 100% of the nation’s lead pipes and service lines — bringing clean drinking water to every American.
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) April 7, 2021
Cornyn’s suggestion that Biden is not really in charge bears upon his continual fallback to his personal residence in Delaware. Breitbart News reported in March that Biden took his “fifth trip home since he became president and his sixth weekend away from the White House.” And often, when he returns to the White House, he frequently does not take questions.
Biden’s media strategy is in contrast to former President Trump’s, whose team frequently stated that Trump was the most accessible president in history, answering the media’s questions at nearly every request.
CNN’s Jim Acosta said in comparison to Biden’s limited media availability that “I don’t think the press should be trying to whip up the Biden presidency and turn it into must-see TV in a contrived way.”