Republican Representative Matt Gaetz of Florida has claimed that Democrats planned to elect President Joe Biden into the White House because he is “too frail” to stand in the way of their progressive agenda.
In a recent letter, led by Representative Jimmy Panetta of California, more than two dozen House Democrats urged Biden to waive his sole authority to release nuclear weapons. They argued that allowing one single person power to start a nuclear war “entails real risks” and called for the structure to be reformed.
Gaetz stood against their position in a Wednesday night appearance on Fox News‘ Hannity.
“I oppose this letter because I believe that no matter who the president is, they have to be vested in the authority to be commander in chief, to take care of the country, even if it is Joe Biden during that time,” he said.
The Florida Republican, a staunch ally of former President Donald Trump, also accused Biden of lacking the mental capacity to run the country and said Democrats knowingly elected him because of that reason.
“‘Sleepy Joe’ wasn’t just a political nickname, it appears to be a government strategy for the Biden Administration,” he said. “You look at a growing number of Democrats who are now concerned about giving Joe Biden the codes for the nuclear system. I’d be concerned about giving Joe Biden the code to my garage door opener.”
Trump coined a series of derogatory nicknames for his rivals throughout his presidential campaigns and four years in office. The ex-president mostly referred to Biden as “Sleepy Joe” to support his campaign’s attacks on the Democrat’s mental fitness. On occasion, he also used “Joe Hidin'” to highlight his allegation that Biden was hiding in his basement during the 2020 campaign.
Gaetz went on to call the Democratic letter seeking to expand accountability for nuclear attacks “all part of their plan.”
“Having a Joe Biden that’s too frail to stand up to their efforts to decentralise power, to take over the economy, to limit people’s rights, to extend the boundaries of executive action beyond what’s constitutionally permissible, they’re able to do these things because Joe Biden’s not in a position to make decisions day in and day out,” he said.
Newsweek reached out to the White House and Panetta’s office for comment.
The House letter urging Biden to diversify authority for nuclear weapons did not mention his mental capacity.
“Past presidents have threatened to attack other countries with nuclear weapons or exhibited behavior that caused other officials to express concern about the president’s judgment,” the letter read.
It added: “While any president would presumably consult with advisors before ordering a nuclear attack, there is no requirement to do so. The military is obligated to carry out the order if they assess it is legal under the laws of war. Under the current posture of U.S. nuclear forces, that attack would happen in minutes.”
In December, Dr. Kevin O’Connor of George Washington University released a medical summary on Biden, in which he called the then-president-elect a “healthy, vigorous, 77-year-old male, who is fit to successfully execute the duties of the Presidency to include those as Chief Executive, Head of State and Commander in Chief.”
Despite his remarks, 33 percent of Americans indicated in a recent Insider poll that they aren’t satisfied with Biden’s mental fitness.