Joe Lockhart, a former press secretary for President Bill Clinton, is publicly advising former Vice President Joe Biden not to debate President Donald Trump.
Lockhart published an op-ed last week at CNN.com warning Biden that he should not debate Trump because the latter is prone to statement that fail the fact-checking test (original emphasis):
Whatever you do, don’t debate Trump. Trump has now made more than 20,000 misleading or false statements according to the Washington Post. It’s a fool’s errand to enter the ring with someone who can’t follow the rules or the truth. Biden will undoubtedly take heat from Republicans and the media for skipping the debates. But it’s worth the risk as trying to debate someone incapable of telling the truth is an impossible contest to win.
However, Biden has been criticized in past debate performances for his misstatements and outright fabrications. In a debate with Alaska Governor Sarah Palin in 2008, Biden made several false claims, including the odd claim that the United States and France had “kicked Hezbollah out of Lebanon.” (Hezbollah, an Iranian-backed terrorist group with an associated political wing, is still very much there, and is a major part of Lebanon’s government.)