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Joe Biden's Concern That Made Him Question Whether He Wanted to Run Again

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

For the longest time, whenever he was asked about his plans to run again, President Biden would evasively respond, but that all changed two weeks ago when he finally followed through and launched his reelection campaign. 

The big announcement wasn't made during a jubilant rally, however. Instead, it dropped at 6 a.m. on a weekday on social media. As The New York Times even acknowledged—it was a sign of how he'd run his campaign even after the pandemic: basement 2.0.

As Spencer reported recently, First Lady Jill Biden was playing an active role behind the scenes in pushing her husband to get there. But ultimately, she acknowledged it was his decision to make. But why did it take so long to say he's running again, which should be a no-brainer for an incumbent president?

It turns out Biden has the same concerns as the rest of America.

The president, who turned 80 in November and would be 86 at the end of a second term, said, "It's a legitimate thing to raise the question of age."

You know, when I decided — and it wasn’t an automatic decision about running again, not because I didn’t think there was more to do but because I thought to myself, you know, four more years, I mean, six more years is — is a long time. It’s a legitimate thing to raise the question of age. And I think it’s totally legitimate.

And one of the things that is what Ted Kaufman said to me, my friend — he said, “Joe, you were the second-youngest man in history ever to start the United States Senate about a century ago, not quite.”  (Laughter.)  “And you’re going to be the oldest President in American history right now.”

And, you know, there have been good parts of being the youngest and good parts of being the oldest. And I hope what I’ve been able to bring to this job and will continue to bring is a little bit of wisdom — a little bit of wisdom. (White House)

Indeed, this was the primary concern among respondents of a recent Associated Press/NORC survey, which found only 26 percent wanted Biden to run again, while 73 percent said he shouldn't. That included 52 percent of Democrats who said they didn't want him to go for a second term. 

Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley, meanwhile, has warned that a vote for Biden is really for Vice President Kamala Harris, since she argued it's not likely he'll "make it" to the end of a second term. 

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