When it comes to national politics, particularly at the scale of presidential campaigns, there are no accidental settings.
Sure, there are plenty of candidates who accidentally say something, or accidentally get caught in embarrassing situations, but there is never a time in which some handler or some communications director is too far away from the action to seek perfection.
These are the folks who remember the things that everyone else forgets. They know where to put the lights to keep reflections from obscuring our views. They know what colors are trending with their focus groups.
And they certainly know that every frame of footage they release is going to be scrutinized to the umpteenth degree.
That’s why some of the choices made by the Biden team this week were so alarming.
3 VERY IMPORTANT THINGS about this photo of Joe Biden calling Kamala to offer her VP spot:
1. Biden has to read from a script that is clearly visible
2. Biden does not know how to hold an iPhone (it’s upside down)
3. The cartoon on Biden’s desk is a man screaming “WHY ME?!” pic.twitter.com/UJt4lruf40
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) August 11, 2020
A script for a gaffe-prone and stumbling elderly candidate? That’s not unexpected and no one on the right side of the aisle is going to die defending Donald Trump’s obvious lack of interest in reading from a teleprompter.
The phone being upside down is…something. It just seems odd that he is both on his phone and on his laptop at the same time, if we’re being honest.
But the “WHY ME?!” cartoon is the thing that really sticks in the ol’ noggin’, isn’t it? Biden’s team knew it was there – how couldn’t they? – and they left it. They knew it would be seen.
What a strange message to send.