Progressive Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez refused to say whether she will support President Joe Biden’s 2024 re-election bid during a Sunday television interview.
The New York Democrat was grilled on the issue by CNN State of the Union host Dana Bash but would not give a straight answer, instead insisting she was fixated on November’s midterm elections.
The 79-year-old president ‘is seeking a second term,’ his friend and ally Senator Chris Coons said on Fox News Sunday.
But it appears that he’s already losing support from a growing faction of the Democratic Party, particularly young people and progressives, who believe he is too old and out of touch to lead today’s America.
Ocasio-Cortez, a leader in the progressive movement, answered with an uncomfortable laugh when asked point-blank if she’ll get behind Biden.
‘You know, if the president chooses to run again in 2024 – I mean, first of all, I’m focused on winning this majority right now, and preserving a majority this year in 2022,’ Ocasio-Cortez said.
‘So we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it, but I think if if the president has a vision – that’s something certainly we’re all willing to entertain and examine when that when the time comes.’
Bash observed: ‘That’s not a yes.’
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said she would ‘take a look at it’ when asked about whether she would endorse President Joe Biden to run for re-election in 2024
Meanwhile a growing number of Democrats are concerned about the president’s chances if he ran for re-election
‘Yeah, you know, I think we should endorse when we get to it, but I believe that the president has been doing a very good job so far,’ the congresswoman offered.
However she still only went so far as to say she would ‘take a look at’ Biden’s pitch when he formally declares his candidacy for 2024.
‘Should he run again, I think that I – you know, I think it’s – it’s, we’ll take a look at it,’ Ocasio-Cortez laughed.
‘But, right now, we need to focus on winning a majority, instead of a presidential election.’
CONCERNS OVER PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN’S HEALTH
BROKEN FOOT PLAYING WITH DOG AND TUMBLE BOARDING AIR FORCE ONE
Biden was walking in a boot after breaking his foot while playing with his dog, Major, in November 2020.
His physician, Dr. Kevin O’Connor, said in a statement at the time that he would likely be required to wear a bootie for several weeks.
However, Biden’s recovery appeared to go well, and he was soon spotted in public without the boot on.
The president was then filmed falling three times as he boarded Air Force One on March 2021.
The president’s fall was blamed on a ‘breeze,’ and he did not suffer any injuries.
He took another tumble boarding Air Force One last month.
HIGH CHOLESTEROL AND IRREGULAR HEARTBEAT
In December 2019, there were concerns over Biden’s health, in particular leading up to the 2020 election.
He released medical records which showed he has an irregular heartbeat and high cholesterol, but which described him as a ‘healthy, vigorous 77-year-old.’
Some experts questioned whether or not he was as healthy as he claimed.
SLIPS OF THE TONGUE AND FEARS OF MEMORY LOSS
Days before the election, he became confused when introducing his granddaughter Natalie at an event, and instead referred to her as ‘my son Beau’.
Beau Biden died in 2015 after battling a brain tumor.
He has mistakenly referred to Vice President Kamala Harris as ‘president’ and incorrectly told US troops that they were going to Ukraine.
Last month, the president was pictured extending his hand for a handshake from nobody during a speech in North Carolina where he wandered off stage.
The congresswoman’s name has been floated multiple times as a potential Democratic presidential contender, though she’s still three years shy of the minimum age requirement for the office.
On the other end, however, a growing number of Democrats are speculating that Biden may be too old.
That even includes David Axelrod, Barack Obama’s former chief strategist who would have worked with Biden in his capacity as the ex-president’s running mate.
‘The presidency is a monstrously taxing job and the stark reality is the president would be closer to 90 than 80 at the end of a second term, and that would be a major issue,’ Barack Obama’s former campaign strategist David Axelrod told the New York Times in a Saturday report.
The political veteran said Biden ‘doesn’t get the credit he deserves’ for leading the country through the pandemic and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine – which he again ascribed to the president’s elderly stature.
‘He looks his age and isn’t as agile in front of a camera as he once was, and this has fed a narrative about competence that isn’t rooted in reality,’ Axelrod said.
Other Democrats were more blunt about their doubts in Biden’s candidacy.
‘Democrats need fresh, bold leadership for the 2024 presidential race…that can’t be Biden,’ a member of the Democratic National Committee from North Carolina said.
A Miami DNC member suggested the president ‘should announce his intent not to seek re-election in ’24 right after the midterms.’
Nearly all 50 Democratic officials interviewed by the Times feared a Biden re-election campaign would not help their party against Republicans, who are expected to make sweeping victories in the coming midterms.
While grateful for Biden’s victory against Donald Trump in 2020, many of the interviewed Democrats, many of whom asked to remain anonymous, said the troubles facing the president’s administration have dealt a major blow to his party.
Among the big ticket issues are record-high inflation that’s the heighest its ever been in more than 40 years, surging gas prices – which hit $5 per gallon on Saturday, the lingering pandemic and the possible end of federal abortion rights as the Supreme Court is poised to end Roe V. Wade in the coming weeks.
Also stinging was Biden’s failure to pass his $1.8 trillion Build Back Better agenda and voting rights expansion, which faced opposition from his own party, and the chaotic U.S. military exit from Afghanistan last summer.
The question remains of who would be poised to replace Biden in this highly polarizing political climate as Democrats fear Trump might launch his own re-election campaign for 2024.
Few of those interviewed by the Times said they did not expect Vice President Kamala Harris to run.
Among the issues sandbagging Biden’s popularity are surging gas prices, which reached an average national cost of $5 per gallon over the weekend
Harris has faced her own failures in office, primarily through the crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border despite her being appointed as the border czar.
Many of the interviewed Democrats instead touted U.S. senators Amy Klobuchar, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren and Corey Booker, as well as U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and Texas gubernatorial hopeful Beto O’Rourke.
Faiz Shakir, Bernie Sanders’ campaign manager in 2020, said it would be best for a younger Democrat to run.
Shakir told the Times that while he believed Biden could beat Trump in a 2024 rematch, the outcome could be different if Republicans instead nominate a rising star in their party, like Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.
‘If it’s DeSantis or somebody, I think that would be a different kind of a challenge,’ Mr. Shakir said.
Howard Dean, the former DNC chairman, echoed the need for a fresh face and revealed he had coted for the 40-year-old Buttigieg in the 2020 primary.
‘The generation after me is just a complete trash heap,’ Dean told the Times.