As public concern over the mental and physical condition of President Joe Biden continues to spread, multiple media outlets have been running interference amid calls for Biden to drop out of the 2024 race. In a pair of headlines that have drawn equal criticism and mockery from online audiences, the Associated Press and the Huffington Post suggested that Biden’s advanced age and frequent mental lapses do not preclude him from holding office, with the latter advising his campaign to adopt AI video editing to “smooth out the bumps.”

On Wednesday, a somewhat contradictory AP headline declared that the 81-year-old Joe Biden is “Often Sharp and Focused But Sometimes Confused And Forgetful,” describing the dual nature of Biden’s condition.

“He is often sharp and focused. But he also has moments, particularly later in the evening, when his thoughts seem jumbled and he trails off mid-sentence or seems confused,” the article reads. “Sometimes he doesn’t grasp the finer points of policy details. He occasionally forgets people’s names, stares blankly and moves slowly around the room.”

Assessing Biden’s performance “behind closed doors” and during public appearances, the outlet determined that the president fluctuates wildly between effectiveness and incompetence, with the determining factor usually being the time of day.

The report continues:

Sometimes, Biden speaks so softly that it is difficult to make out his words even with a microphone. He’ll stop mid-sentence and trail off during speeches. At other times he runs the room, leading the audience, joking and shaking hands with thrilled supporters, in clear command of the moment. His gait is often stiff, but sometimes he jogs.

The wording of the AP’s headline quickly drew mockery online, with many making comparisons to CNN’s infamous “fiery but mostly peaceful” report during the 2020 BLM riots.

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At the same time, the Huffington Post published an op-ed piece calling on the Biden campaign to turn to artificial intelligence to cover up Biden’s mistakes during live events.

The piece, entitled “It’s Time for the Biden Campaign to Embrace AI,” states that Biden’s recent debate performance—the incident that sparked the calls for him to step down—highlights the ways AI can save his campaign.

“Given the president’s concerning performance last week, it’s time for the Biden campaign to consider leveraging artificial intelligence to effectively reach the voting public,” author Kaivan Shroff declares, warning that “the consequences of not taking this approach could be dire.”

As the op-ed states:

Joe Biden is old and has had a lifelong stutter. He acknowledged in a fiery rally following his debate performance: “I might not walk as easily or talk as smoothly as I used to.” This has impeded his ability to communicate with mass audiences with consistent success. AI augmentations and video renderings could serve to smooth out these bumps while allowing the Biden campaign to effectively disseminate true information about the state of our democracy and the Biden administration’s accomplishments. The president has limited time to campaign as he also focuses on running the country, and AI would be a cost-effective and efficient way to communicate his message personally and directly to voters.

Bemoaning the fact that Biden is currently trailing behind former President Donald Trump in the latest polls, Kroff suggests that “modern technology offers a clear solution.”

Related: White House Complains “Cheap Fakes” Make Biden Look Confused, Incompetent

“AI can be used to polish how the president comes across, allowing voters to focus on his substance. How many times have we heard voters and pundits alike gripe that ‘Biden would be the perfect candidate if he were just 10 years younger?’ With modern technology, this exact deliverable is possible.”

In effect, the Post justifies retouching videos of Biden’s public appearances with AI because other right-leaning outlets have circulated “cheap fakes” of the president to make him look weak and confused.

“We must ask the question, are augmented AI videos that present Biden in his best form ― while sharing honest and accurate information ― really more socially damaging than our information ecosystem’s current realities? I think not,” the op-ed says.

Connor Walcott is a staff writer for Follow Connor on X and look for him on VT’s “The Unusual Suspects.”

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