With the imminent arrival of fall and the onset of the presidential primary season, a growing faction of Democrats is becoming increasingly concerned about their prospects for the 2024 election.
Recurring opinion polls are painting a grim picture for President Biden and his vice president, Kamala Harris, as their approval ratings plummet. This decline coincides with a sluggish economy, rising costs for essential goods and services, surging interest rates, and continued challenges at the southwestern border.
Adding to the apprehension, there is a growing fear among Democrats that President Biden, now 80 years old and exhibiting signs of rapid physical and cognitive decline, may not complete his current term. This possibility has raised concerns about the party’s reliance on Harris, who has consistently polled less favorably than the president.
“He is in a period of his life where passing and death is imminent,” Sharon Sweda, head of the Democratic Party in Lorain County in Ohio, told the Washington Post, adding that she often hears from voters worried about the president’s fragile condition.
“We are all on a ticking clock. But when you’re at his age or at Trump’s age, that clock is ticking a little faster, and that’s a concern for voters,” she continued, the Post noted.
The outlet added:
Many in the party continue to voice confidence in Biden, and they note that Trump himself is not much younger at 77. But Biden’s allies are frustrated by the hand-wringing from an anxious faction of the party, and even as campaign officials point to the president’s record of defying skeptics, they are strategizing internally about how to best combat the unmistakable nervousness.
Such “Washington whispers” have become far too common among “bed-wetting” Democrats, said Jim Messina, who ran Barack Obama’s 2012 campaign and recently put together a 24-slide deck aiming to calm the jitters, which he sent to prominent Democratic officeholders.
“I’m not saying that this is going to be easy and he’s fine,” Messina told the Post. “Look, America is split right down the middle. Both parties are going to get 46 percent, and we’re fighting over the rest.”