Democrats Express Concern Over Joe Biden’s Age for 2024 Reelection
Some Democrats have publicly stated that President Joe Biden is simply too old to run for reelection in 2024 in the coming months.
Biden, who turned 80 on November 20th, is the oldest president in US history, having been inaugurated at the age of 78 in 2021. Democrats are concerned that his record age in office will be a stumbling block if he decides to run for reelection.
“I think it’s a legitimate thing to be concerned about anyone’s age, including mine,” Biden told MSNBC in October. “But I think the best way to make the judgment is to watch me.”
Some Democrats appear to have observed the president and concluded that he is too old.”There would be absolutely no doubt if he were 60 and not 80,” former President Barack Obama's chief strategist David Axelrod told the New York Times in an article published Monday.
Shelia Huggins, a Democrat National Committee member from North Carolina, told the Times that she believes Biden is too old to be the Democratic nominee. “I just still have some concerns about him running again. Part of it does have to do with his age,” she said.
Tyler Jones, a Democratic strategist in South Carolina, is also concerned about Biden's age.“Most people in this country don’t know many 80-year-olds that can run the entire country,” he said. “That’s not to say that they don’t exist, and it’s not to say that he can’t do it, but it is a very rare thing. And so the burden, unlike most presidents, the burden is on Biden to show the country that he can not just win in ’24, but lead for the next four years.”
Poll Reflects Democrats' Concern Over Biden's Age
The Democrats' concerns about Biden's age come as a new poll shows that 64% of Americans are “very concerned” or “somewhat concerned” about Biden's mental acuity, up from 59% in August.
Any concerns about Biden's mental and physical fitness do not appear to bother White House spokesman Andrew Bates, who deflected when the Times asked him about Biden's ability to lead the country. Bates cited Biden's “most successful legislative record of any president since Lyndon Johnson” and the 2022 midterm elections as evidence of Biden's political viability in 2024.
“The same coalition President Biden built to expand the map for Democrats in 2020 powered our historic midterm wins, including unprecedented youth turnout,” Bates stated. “The president galvanized independent voters with a message widely adopted across the party, highlighting the differences between his values and ultra-MAGA Republicans’ agenda.”
Biden has not yet officially declared his candidacy for president in 2024, but he is expected to do so in the coming months. Following speculation that Biden will make an announcement, some top Democratic potential candidates appeared to yield to Biden. Politico reported on Saturday that California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) had decided not to run.
If Biden does not run again for president, many Democrats will undoubtedly enter the primary. Vice President Kamala Harris, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, and Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Bernie Sanders are among those who could run (I-VT).