President Joe Biden’s inner circle is growing “nervous” over his delay in formally announcing whether he will run for re-election in 2024, according to a new report from Politico.
Though Biden’s advisors have spent months laying the groundwork for a re-election campaign, “a sense of doubt is creeping into conversations around 2024,” Politico reported after speaking with multiple individuals close to the White House.
Biden was widely expected to announce another bid for the presidency right after his Feb. 7 State of the Union address. However, as real-world events rapidly unfold, people in Biden’s orbit now say there is no firm deadline on when he may announce, according to Politico.
A winter announcement would be early compared to the last election, when Biden announced his candidacy in April of 2019. That was the same month during which his predecessor Barack Obama also fired up his presidential campaign.
“Obviously, it creates doubts and problems if he waits and waits and waits,” Democratic strategist Mark Longabaugh told Politico. “But if he were to somehow not declare ‘til June or something, I think some people would be stomping around.”
The report comes after numerous polls released over a period of months consistently show Democrats not wanting Biden to run for re-election. Earlier this month, just 37 percent of Democrats wanted Biden to run, a steep decline from 52 percent of respondents who said the same prior to the 2022 midterms.
Biden’s allies say that he is only discussing a possible campaign “sparingly” with some speculating that impending investigations into his son Hunter’s business dealings could impact a second bid for the White House, according to Politico.
Moreover, the delay in an announcement is allowing “nervous chatter” to circulate, prompting members of the Democratic Party to prepare backup options so the party is not left in a difficult position.
“Without being overly aggressive, everyone’s still keeping the motor running just in case and they’re not being bashful about it,” one Democratic donor told Politico, describing a call with the staff of a candidate who ran against Biden in 2020. “On the phone, everyone is very clear and has the same sentence up front: ‘If Joe Biden is running, no one will work harder than me, but if he’s not, for whatever reason, we just want to make sure we’re prepared for the good of the party.’”