Letters to the Editor: Biden’s defense of democracy and competence are much more important than his age

A man speaks into microphones.
President Biden speaks about aid to Ukraine at the White House on Tuesday.
(Evan Vucci / Associated Press)

To the editor: As one who is about a year older than former President Trump and two years younger than President Biden, I feel qualified to informally assess their respective degrees of cognitive decline. (“Biden’s polls aren’t great. How much is the media’s fault?” Opinion, Feb. 14)

Like them both, I occasionally misspeak some prominent person’s name or forget an exact date. But I try to maintain my mental acuity, which leads me to read quality periodicals (such as The Times) and to converse with learned, levelheaded friends.

I strongly suspect that Biden is far more inclined than Trump to strive to maintain his mental faculties. With Trump infamously disinclined to read and given to befriending unhinged demagogues, I have to doubt his presence of mind.


In contrast, I view Biden’s studious, measured adherence to democratic norms as qualities to be preferred in a president. As is said, age is just a number.

Frank Hochfeld, Albany, Calif.


To the editor: Fifty years ago, then-Republican Sen. Barry Goldwater led a delegation to the Oval Office, which resulted in President Nixon’s resignation, thereby expediting the nation’s recovery from the Watergate scandal.

Similarly, a delegation consisting of Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.), House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.), former Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco) and former President Obama should conduct a White House intervention.

The message: “Not just for the good of the party but for the survival of our democracy, you must step aside.”

Biden has been a transitional leader who will likely be regarded favorably by historians in the future. However, nominating a vibrant candidate who maximizes the likelihood of defeating Trump in November is the most important job right now.


Dave Sanderson, La Cañada Flintridge


To the editor: Thanks to columnist Jackie Calmes for focusing on what is important in the election and not treating it like some sporting event, which is what we get from hyperventilating cable network news, social media and dubious pollsters.

The only poll that matters is the ballot box, and voters are looking not just at the candidates’ ages, but seriously considering the people they appoint to work in Cabinet positions.

Perhaps the media should stop insulting our intelligence for once with polling and realize that we take a lot more into consideration when we exercise our freedom to vote.

Michael J. Harley, Laguna Niguel



To the editor: Never have I agreed with anyone as much as I do with Calmes in her column on Biden’s poll numbers.

Of course the media are responsible for the president’s low approval ratings. Considering the reprehensible actions and words of the former president, Biden is a man of integrity and strength.

Shame on The Times too for keeping on with this prejudice. He and we deserve better.

Shelley Keith, Sherman Oaks