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4 more senior Dems call on Biden to stand down from reelection bid

Several more senior House Democrats called on President Joe Biden to abandon his reelection bid during a private call convened by Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries on Sunday afternoon, according to several people participating.

Among those forcefully calling for Biden to stand down during the nearly two-hour call were Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.), Rep. Adam Smith (D-Wash.), Mark Takano (D-Calif.) and Joe Morelle (D-N.Y.), according to two people familiar with the private session.

Other members on the call voiced concerns about Biden’s path to November, including Reps. Jim Himes (Conn.), Zoe Lofgren (Calif.), Don Beyer (Va.) and Rick Larsen (Wash.). It’s a poor omen for the Biden campaign as the entire Democratic elected apparatus prepares to return to Washington on Monday evening where lawmakers will face tough questioning about their party’s standard-bearer.

Aaron Fritschner, Beyer’s spokesperson, posted on X to incorrect reports that Beyer called for a new nominee: “To be clear [Beyer] supports President Biden and said so on this call and any reporting to the contrary is a misunderstanding of what he said and what he believes.”

The additional calls for Biden to stand aside from senior Democrats come after the president’s performance during an interview last week with ABC News did nothing to assuage concerns among rank-and-file lawmakers about his continued viability in the race. Members have repeatedly urged the president to do more unscripted events and town halls to demonstrate his continued vitality and energy as quickly as possible.

It’s not just the House either. A group of Senate Democrats are reportedly planning a discussion of Biden’s path forward, led by Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.), once that chamber returns to Washington on Monday. Five House Democrats have publicly urged Biden to stand down, while numerous others have expressed concerns about his viability in private.

Jeffries has spoken little publicly on Biden’s future since the debate, but mysteriously posted a Bible verse on the social media platform X on Sunday morning before the call. “Do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go,” the Democratic leader wrote.

Democratic ire at Biden’s response during the ABC News interview that only “the Lord almighty” could force him from the presidential contest continued to bubble up on Sunday.

“We have to win this election,” said Sen. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) on MSNBC. “This isn’t a decision for Lord almighty. This is a real world decision for real world people in politics who care about our country.”

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