President Joe Biden is suddenly unsure about whether or not he will seek reelection in 2024.
According to the Washington Examiner, Biden indicated as much on Wednesday after he gave a speech at the White House Tribal Nations Summit.
“I don’t know about that”
Biden concluded his speech, saying, “as my grandfather Finnegan would say, ‘that’s the Irish of it.'”
The crowd began clapping, and then someone in the crowd could be heard shouting, “four more years!”
Biden waived the suggestion off with a hand gesture and by saying, “I don’t know about that.”
— Forbes (@Forbes) November 30, 2022
That was unexpected.
Back in the early summer, reports emerged indicating that Democratic insiders, including some Democratic politicians, were against the idea of Biden seeking reelection. Those reports were followed by polls, which showed that a majority of Democratic voters also do not want Biden to seek reelection.
At the time, two main reasons were cited for not wanting Biden to seek reelection: one is Biden and his administration’s lack of success and the other is Biden’s old age: after recently turning 80, he is the oldest president to ever hold office – and, often times, it shows.
Despite the reports and polling, however, it has been the official position of Biden and the White House that Biden intends to seek reelection in 2024.
It was just before Thanksgiving that White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, once again, said, “I’ll just repeat what the president has said many times, what I’ve said many times at this podium, is that the president intends to run.”
A change of heart?
What makes Biden’s comment even more perplexing is that recently, as The Hill reports, “Progressives have cooled on the idea of finding a new leader to seek the party’s presidential nomination in 2024.”
This shift – away from the earlier reports that many Democrats opposed a Biden reelection bid – occurred after the midterm elections.
There is no question that the Democrats exceeded predictions and expectations in those elections, and, many Democrats are attributing this success, at least in part, to Biden, which is yet another reason why Biden’s “I don’t know about that” comment is so unexpected.
It is unclear when exactly Biden plans to announce his 2024 decision. In early November, Biden said, “my guess is it would be early next year.”