Democrats Urge New Candidate After Biden’s Debate Struggles

Concerns are rising among Democrats after President Joe Biden’s disastrous performance in the latest debate with former President Donald Trump. Despite months of preparation, Biden, 81, showed signs of age and struggled to respond effectively during the televised event.

The debate, moderated by CNN’s Dana Bash and Jake Tapper, featured no live audience and had frequent microphone cuts. These factors did not help Biden, who appeared less vigorous compared to a controlled Trump. Within minutes of the debate’s start, prominent Democrats expressed their worries. Ravi Gupta, an Obama campaign alumnus, tweeted about the poor impression Biden was making, suggesting the need for a different candidate.

An op-ed in the New York Times quickly labeled Biden’s performance a “disaster.” The article captured the high anxiety within the party, with Van Jones, a former adviser to President Barack Obama, admitting on CNN that Biden did not do well. Jones hinted at the need for a new direction before the convention.

Biden’s first major misstep came when he claimed he was the first president in a decade not to have American casualties overseas, overlooking the 13 service members killed during the Afghanistan withdrawal in 2021. This inaccurate statement, along with several other faltering moments, reinforced doubts about his capability.

The debate became more problematic as Biden struggled with a question on national debt and taxes, stumbling and pausing repeatedly. The moderators had to cut him off, redirecting the question to Trump. Biden’s confusion was evident, prompting Trump to remark that even Biden seemed unsure of his own statements.

Social media buzzed with calls for a new candidate. Andrew Yang, a former Democratic presidential candidate, tweeted that it was time for the party to nominate someone else. New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof echoed this sentiment, urging Biden to withdraw and let the convention decide.

Politico reported widespread “confusion and concern” among Democrats watching the debate. Democratic activist Jay Surdukowski declared Biden’s candidacy over, while another prominent operative called for an open convention.

Despite attempts by the media to downplay Biden’s performance by suggesting he had a cold, the damage was done. The debate highlighted Biden’s vulnerabilities and triggered a scramble within the party to consider other options before the Democratic National Convention.