WAKE-UP CALL: Hakeem Jeffries Sets Up Emergency 'Virtual' House Dem Meeting After Dismal Biden Interview

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Things are simply not improving for Joe Biden, as the crisis over his deteriorated state during the debate with Donald Trump rolls into Day 9--and refuses to die.


As my colleague Nick Arama noted in an earlier piece, Democrat Senator Mark Warner of Virginia announced on Friday that he would be convening a group of Dem senators about Biden. We know very little about it, other than it is supposed to happen on Monday and it's not being framed as a pep rally in support of "The Big Guy."

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But Monday, in campaign chronology, is a long way away.

Earlier, we wrote about Minnesota Rep. Angie Craig, the fifth House Democrat to publicly put her name on a statement imploring Biden to step aside from the nomination process, saying in part that she believes "he should step aside for the next generation of leadership, that "t[]he stakes are too high" for him to wait:

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:Now, the timeline on the Democrats hashing out Biden's future as the nominee just moved up a day. House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (NY) has made a similar announcement as Sen. Warner, after Biden's ABC interview with George Stephanopoulos failed to calm fears on the Left about him potentially hurting candidates down-ballot.

Rep. Jeffries has scheduled a "virtual" meeting of the ranking committee members, according to new reporting from the NY Times:


Representative Hakeem Jeffries, Democrat of New York and the minority leader, has scheduled a virtual meeting on Sunday with senior House Democrats to discuss President Biden’s candidacy and the path forward, according to a senior official familiar with the plan.

The session, which is to include the ranking members of congressional committees who make up the top echelons of the party in the House, comes at a time of profound worry among Democrats on Capitol Hill about Mr. Biden’s poor performance at last week’s presidential debate. House Democrats have not met as a group since, even as concerns have mounted about Mr. Biden’s viability as a candidate and the impact he could have on his party’s ability to win back control of the chamber and hold the Senate should he remain in the race.  

The Times' piece characterizes Jeffries as being in "listening mode" as more problems and gaffes have marred Biden's road to recovery in confidence since the debate, but "refraining from pressuring Democrats to rally around the president but also encouraging them not to be rash in their public pronouncements."

One of those defecting House Democrats, Mike Quigley, who'll also be listening in, presumably, told CNN on July 2nd that while "it's [Biden's] decision, his next move "impacts...all of the other races coming in November":


Notice that Quigley also rejected the talking point that it was just "a bad night." 

He continued in the same tone during a more recent, MSNBC sitdown: "Mr. President, your legacy is set. We owe you the greatest debt of gratitude. The only thing that you can do now to cement that for all time and prevent utter catastrophe is to step down and let someone else do this."

There's only one direction this can go now, in other words. Expect the fireworks on the other side of the aisle to extend past Independence Day weekend. We'll see if the Democrat Party (metaphorically) manages to blow itself up. Time's nearly up, Joe. 


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