Lawmaker Becomes First Elected Democrat to Call for Biden to Drop Out of the Race

AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke, File

Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-TX) has become the first Democratic elected politician to publicly call on President Joe Biden to drop out of the presidential race after his less-than-stellar performance during Thursday’s debate.

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The lawmaker issued a statement in which he lauded Biden’s achievements during his first term in office, claiming he “helped rebuild our country from the devastation of a pandemic, an insurrection, and years of Trump wreckage.”

The congressman acknowledged that Biden “has continued to run substantially behind Democratic senators in key states and in most polls has trailed Donald Trump.” However, Doggett “hoped that the debate would provide some momentum to change that.” The lawmaker conceded that this did not happen and that instead, “the President failed to effectively defend his many accomplishments and expose Trump’s many lies.”

Rep. Doggett highlighted the seriousness of the upcoming election and argued that Democrats’ “overriding consideration must be who has the best hope of saving our democracy from an authoritarian takeover by a criminal and his gang” and asserted that “Too much is at stake to risk a Trump victory—too great a risk to assume that what could not be turned around in a year, what was not turned around in the debate, can be turned around now.”

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The lawmaker then referenced Monday’s Supreme Court ruling on Trump’s presidential immunity, a development that has incensed Democrats. “This week, with the Supreme Court creating 'a law-free zone around the President,' Trump, newly empowered with immunity, could usher America into a long, dark, authoritarian era unchecked by either the courts or a submissive Republican Congress.”

Doggett then issued his call for Biden to withdraw from the race.

I represent the heart of a congressional district once represented by Lyndon Johnson. Under very different circumstances, he made the painful decision to withdraw. President Biden should to the same. While much of his work has been transformational, he pledged to be transitional. He has the opportunity to encourage a new generation of leaders from whom a nominee can be chosen to unite our country through an open, democratic process.

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While Doggett is the first Democratic official to call for Biden’s withdrawal, he is not the first high-profile leftist to do so. Left-leaning media outlets began pushing this idea the day after the debate when Biden’s age and cognitive problems were on full display in front of the nation.

Biden’s campaign indicated that he has no intention of leaving the race, which has fueled speculation that the Democratic Party could force the issue. Some have suggested that replacing the president at this point in the campaign would not be possible. However, there appear to be mechanisms in place that could allow for this scenario, even if it is unlikely.

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