President Joe Biden has been plagued by abysmal poll numbers, with a Reuters/Ipsos survey published last week putting his approval rating at just 36%.
This, along with concerns over his age and mental stamina has led some to suggest that Democrats may be looking for a new candidate.
Other contenders may be waiting in the wings
The Hill contributor Aime Parnes considered that scenario in an article published this weekend, pointing out how the president will be 81 years old by election day 2024.
What’s more, Parnes also noted the “brutal political headwinds he and his party are now facing” ahead of this year’s midterms.
Parnes looked at some of Biden’s potential replacements, beginning with Vice President Kamala Harris. Although Harris has visibility and name recognition, her poll numbers are even worse than the president’s.
Another possibility includes Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, someone who has been hailed as the first openly gay department head. Yet Parnes wrote that “some still wonder if he has enough political chops to make the leap to the Oval Office.”
Also receiving consideration is Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who sought the Democratic nomination in 2020. However, Warren has consistently denied that she has any plans to seek it again.
Some observers doubt Biden is going anywhere
Still, not all observers are convinced that Biden won’t run again. One of them is David Yepsen, who formerly worked as a political reporter for the Des Moines Register and IowaPBS.
“I expect Biden to run for reelection. Any hint that he won’t would be counterproductive,” The Washington Times quoted Yespen as saying. “Why would he make himself a lame duck any sooner than he absolutely has to?”
Nevertheless, Yespend acknowledged that he can’t rule out the possibility Democrats may decide to go with someone else.
“But it’s not crazy talk given his age, his halting performances on television and his poor job approval ratings,” he admitted.
“Depending on how bad the Democratic losses are in the midterms — and they could be substantial — he may well opt not to run again,” he added. “Or he may be so weak that some progressive may decide to take him on.”