Biden meets with Democratic mayors in bid to shore up support

Washington — President Biden participated in a call with the Democratic Mayors Association Tuesday night as he tries to drum up support for his re-election bid and maintain calm concerns about whether he can handle the job for another four years as an octogenarian.

In a statement late Tuesday night, Biden’s campaign said the president participated in a call with nearly 200 mayors and “outlined his vision for a second term.”

The campaign said he made comments about his policy priorities and then answered questions, but it did not say whether he addressed the controversy surrounding his re-election bid after his disastrous debate performance against former President Donald Trump last month, renewing concerns about his health and age.

New York Mayor Eric Adams and Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson had said they would be among the local leaders meeting virtually with Biden.

Biden has been meeting with a number of elected officials in recent days as they weigh whether to continue to support his candidacy. Congressional Democrats have been all over the map about whether there is a path forward for Biden’s campaign.

Several Democrats in the House of Representatives have called on him to withdraw from the racewhile others have been unequivocal in their support. No Senate Democrat has publicly called on him to step aside, though some have urged him to do more to show he can meet the demands of the campaign and the presidency.

Adams appeared to criticize those calling for Biden to withdraw from the campaign, saying, “You can’t impose anything on candidates and their teams.”

“You tell them, ‘I’m here to help. Give me my marching orders,'” he told reporters Tuesday. “I’m just a soldier. Whatever they ask of me, I’m going to do it.”

Adams said it is up to Biden whether he remains on the 2024 list.

“The president will decide what he’s going to do,” he said. “He’s the president of the United States. I respect that. He’ll decide what he’s going to do.”

Johnson said he looked forward to talking to the president, but was not very supportive of his candidacy.

“Joe Biden is the president and our Democratic nominee, and we must all do everything we can to defeat Donald Trump in November,” he wrote.

—Aaron Navarro contributed reporting.

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