Silicon Valley figures are not holding back after Biden’s disastrous debate

    Chris Szagola/AP images, Evan Vucci/AP images, Tyler Le/BI

    Many tech figures were less than impressed with Joe Biden after his debate with Trump.Venture capitalists queried Biden’s fitness for office, while joking the country was in danger.Other responses ranged from sharp criticism to mockery and despair.

    Several Silicon Valley figures have offered their thoughts on President Joe Biden’s performance in Thursday’s presidential debate — and it’s not a pretty picture.

    Many believe that the night simply could not have gone worse for the president.

    The event triggered no shortage of hot takes from tech personalities and influencers, who took to social media to mock Biden’s performance against Donald Trump.

    Over the course of roughly 90 minutes, Biden’s fitness for office was questioned as he fumbled several lines, appeared to forget what he was saying, and was dragged into a battle of vindictive personal attacks with his Republican nemesis.

    “We have a 1,000 trillionaires in America — I mean billionaires in America,” the sitting president said at one point while commenting on the country’s tax system.

    Some Silicon Valley figures have warmed up to Trump

    Heading into Thursday’s debate, the election was clearly splitting opinion among Silicon Valley figures.

    Biden had earned public support in tech circles from the likes of LinkedIn cofounder Reid Hoffman and Vinod Khosla, a billionaire venture capitalist who hosted the president at his home for a fundraiser last month.

    Reid Hoffman publicly backed Joe Biden before the first election debate.

    Kimberly White/Getty Images

    But he had also drawn sharp criticism from powerful tech figures like Elon Musk, who wrote on X in April that Biden “is just a tragic front for a far-left political machine” who “obviously barely knows what’s going on.”

    After the debate, Musk chose to focus on the blizzard of memes that had been circulating rather than the candidates’ performances.

    Tonight was a clear victory … for memes

    — Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 28, 2024

    Plenty of other tech figures did not hold back when discussing Biden’s performance, however.

    While there’s been a deafening silence from Biden supporters like Hoffman and Khosla have shared a deafening silence following last night’s broadcast, ardent Trump supporters were vocal.

    David Sacks, an influential entrepreneur and investor who officially endorsed Trump this month, took to social media to lay into the president’s blunders on live television.

    “If Biden can’t handle a debate, how can he handle the most dangerous foreign policy situation since the Cuban Missile Crisis? It’s time to pull back from the brink,” Sacks wrote on X in the aftermath of the debate.

    If Biden can’t handle a debate, how can he handle the most dangerous foreign policy situation since the Cuban Missile Crisis? It’s time to pull back from the brink.

    — David Sacks (@DavidSacks) June 28, 2024

    Jason Calacanis, an angel investor who cohosts the “All In” podcast with Sacks, also took to X to comment that wrote on X that a “hot swap” is coming, suggesting that the Democrats were getting ready to replace the incumbent president as their candidate.

    “This is unfair to Biden — let him retire and enjoy his twilight years,” he said while adding during a live blog that “he objectively seems out of it.”

    It’s notable, though, that he was not positive about Trump’s performance either. He accused the former president of rambling and said the fact-checkers would likely “savage” his claims.

    Some tech figures leaned into mockery. Nikita Bier, a Los Angeles-based founder, seemed to excoriate the president’s performance, writing that “it’s crazy that the entire future of the country was changed by a single intern forgetting to bring the Adderall to Atlanta.”

    Meanwhile, Shaun Maguire, general partner at venture capital firm Sequoia, said: “If Biden was that bad when maximally prepped,” it’s worth asking what America is getting “behind closed doors.”

    Others expressed their dismay more broadly.

    Delian Asparouhov, partner at Founders Fund, a San Francisco-based venture capital firm, kept things more straightforward, writing: “Every American citizen tonight,” alongside a screenshot of Ralph Wiggum from “The Simpsons” carrying the simple caption: “(chuckles) I’m in danger.”

    every american citizen tonight

    — delian (@zebulgar) June 28, 2024

    Startup investor Sarah Guo also lamented the situation, saying simply, “This is not the best America has to offer.”

    Still, others sounded positive notes for the Democrats as a whole. Y Combinator cofounder Paul Graham posted on X that “Biden bombing the debate” was good for the party as a better candidate would emerge.

    Biden bombing in the debate is actually good news for the Democrats. It means we’ll get a new candidate who can win.

    — Paul Graham (@paulg) June 28, 2024

    While speculation swirls around whether the Democrats will indeed replace Biden as their nominee ahead of the election, it’s clear that a growing percentage of Silicon Valley has decided who their preference is.

    Read the original article on Business Insider


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