IT was Donald Trump’s birthday on Tuesday. He turned 76. Alas, it is too late to send a gift, though you can probably, for a donation, still sign the “official” card organised by his son, Donald Trump Jr.

As per, the late show wags queued up to mark the occasion. “Pretty impressive – 76 and he can still get an insurrection,” said Seth Myers, referring to the January 6 storming of the Capitol by Trump supporters, an event currently being dissected on prime time television by a congressional committee.

Mr Trump is said not to like a fuss on his birthdays. A round of golf and dinner with the family is as wild as it gets. Just as well. It must be difficult to find a gift for the man who has everything. Or nearly everything.

Unless you can wrap up the election win he claims was stolen from him, a new golf bag or weirdly long tie does not quite cut it. In any case, Mr Trump already has the gift that keeps on giving, and his name is Joe Biden.

In the same week that Mr Trump turned 76, his successor watched his approval rating fall for the third week in a row. It now sits at around the 39% mark, which is worse than Mr Trump polled at the same stage of his presidency.

There is an index of reasons why Mr Biden is finding the going tough, starting at A for Afghanistan, chaotic withdrawal from, and running through the alphabet to Z, zooming inflation rate. Inflation is rising faster in America than in any other G7 country and now stands at 8.6%, a 40-year high. Much of that was fuelled by government spending to contain the economic fallout from the pandemic, the death toll from which passed one million in May.

As in every other country, Americans are feeling hammered by the increasing cost of living. The very least they expect from their President is that he does something about it.

Yet here, as on other matters, Mr Biden appears as though he is being swept along, powerless against the tide. What sort of President can’t keep the supermarket shelves filled with baby formula?

He did act on that eventually, but by then the damage to America’s reputation was done.

In foreign policy, Mr Biden did live up to his promise to strengthen Nato, though arguably Russia’s invasion of Ukraine was the main driving force behind that. While that received bipartisan backing and plaudits internationally, other moves have been more controversial.

It was announced this week that his visit to the Middle East in July will take in Saudi Arabia, a country he previously said should be treated as a “pariah” following the murder of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

That will make an interesting photo call when, as the Saudis have announced, Mr Biden meets Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the man American intelligence has linked to the killing of Mr Khashoggi.

It was on a visit to Warsaw that Mr Biden made one of his worst foreign policy gaffes to date, ending a speech on Vladimir Putin with the declaration, “For God’s sake his man cannot remain in power.” It was the kind of off the cuff, shoot from the lip utterance his predecessor was accused of making. But here it was President Biden, with his decades of experience in foreign policy, touted as one of his greatest strengths, roundly putting his foot in it.

Then there are the minor but significant stories about his allegedly short temper. His has lost it on several occasions with reporters, earning him the title of “curmudgeon in chief” from one writer. At a press conference, not realising his mic was still on, he was heard calling a Fox News reporter a “stupid son of a bitch”.

His warning to staff before the election, that anyone being rude to another would be “fired on the spot”, does not seem to apply to him should one of them irritate the President during a briefing with an acronym too many.

But he is the President, who cares if the feelings of underlings and reporters are bruised. If they can’t stand the heat, etc. Yet this was not the Joe Biden as sold to the electorate, the solid, dependable, smile for everyone kind of guy as praised by Obama.

So what happened? You could say that he inherited a divided America that was never going to heal overnight. That he promised too much. That he was just plain unlucky in his timing.

Or you could say that he left it too late to become President, that at 79 he is too old to do the job, and he should stand down now and let someone else take a tilt at Donald Trump or AN Other in 2024.

The age question ran through a recent piece in the New York Times headlined: “Should Biden run in 2024? Democratic whispers of ‘no’ start to rise”.

Among those quoted was David Axelrod, the adviser who played a key role in steering Obama into the White House. “The presidency is a monstrously taxing job,” he says, “and the stark reality is that the President would be closer to 90 than 80 at the end of a second term, and that would be a major issue.”

Others have been more openly critical of another Biden run, whether for age or other reasons. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Democrat congresswoman and risen star, was asked recently if she would support him. “We’ll take a look at it,” was her withering reply.

Unfair or not, his age is working against the President. Ronald Reagan, who faced similar doubts about his age, was 69 when he was inaugurated. Joe Biden was 78.

Reagan turned his advancing years to his advantage, saying that he would not make age an issue in the campaign against Walter Mondale. “I am not going to exploit, for political purposes, my opponent’s youth and inexperience,” he quipped.

If the Democrats do as badly in the midterms as has been predicted, doubts about a second Biden term will only grow. Mr Trump poked at his opponent’s age mercilessly in 2020 and will do so again.

In Mr Biden’s favour, there is no-one obviously ready to replace him. It has been a long time since anyone regarded his own Veep, Kamala Harris, as a president in waiting.

So he will survive, for the same reason Boris Johnson (58 on Sunday, as it happens) survives.

Two politicians who waited lifetimes for power but did not, in the end, know what to do with it.