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Democrats use clips of Trump to counter Biden memory claims

Democrats on Tuesday sought to turn the tables on Republicans who zeroed in on special counsel Robert Hur’s commentary on President Biden’s memory, turning repeatedly to video clips of former President Trump mangling words, mixing up individuals or forgetting details.

House Judiciary Committee ranking member Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) opened the hearing with a video montage of past Trump statements in which he appeared to confuse Biden with former President Barack Obama, mixed up former Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) with GOP rival Nikki Haley and mistakenly called Hungarian leader Viktor Orbán the president of Turkey.

“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,” Nadler said.

Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) turned to the video board for a series of clips in which Trump stumbled over his words in speeches while he was president and at campaign rallies.

And Rep. Mary Gay Scanlon (D-Pa.), seeking to rebut claims about Biden’s memory, used video clips to illustrate Trump’s own “lapse in memory during a deposition.”

One clip featured Trump being asked what years he was married to Marla Maples, to which Trump said he’d “have to get the exact dates.” Asked if it was correct he married his current wife in January 2005, Trump said he didn’t know “relevant to that day.”

And asked in another deposition about an associate named James Webb, Trump said he didn’t remember the name.

Scanlon noted Trump told lawyers he did not remember information 35 times during a lawsuit over Trump University, and he said he did not remember or could not recall information 27 times in response to questions from special counsel Robert Mueller.

Special counsel Robert Hur testified before the House Judiciary Committee on his findings from an investigation into Biden’s handling of classified documents. Hur concluded no charges were warranted against Biden, but his report garnered significant attention for repeatedly calling into question the president’s memory and ability to recall certain details.

Republicans have harped on those descriptions to argue Biden was let off the hook because he has a poor memory, and GOP officials have more broadly cited Hur’s report during the reelection campaign to argue Biden is unfit to serve another term.

“All I have to do when I’m caught taking home classified materials is say, ‘I’m sorry Mr. Hur, but I’m getting old, my memory’s not so great,’” Rep. Tom McClintock (R-Calif.) said Tuesday in questioning Hur. “This is the doctrine you’ve established in our laws now, and it’s frightening.”

“Congressman, my intent is certainly not to establish any sort of doctrine,” Hur responded. “I had a particular task, I have a particular set of evidence to consider and make a judgment with respect to one particular set of evidence, and that is what I did.”

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