After guaranteeing that President Joe Biden will run for reelection in 2024, Vice President Kamala Harris appeared to walk back the statement on Wednesday, introducing some doubt as to whether the elderly president will attempt to remain in office.
"The president intends to run and if he does, I will be his ticket mate. We will run together," Harris told a Los Angeles Times reporter on Wednesday, allowing for the possibility that Biden will bow out after just one term in office.
Harris made the comments on Air Force 2 after her advisors told the reporter that she wanted to come to the back of the plane to clarify the unequivocal response she gave when asked Monday if Biden would run in 2024.
"Joe Biden is running for reelection, and I will be his ticket mate. Full stop," Harris had said Monday.
Biden, who at 79 is the oldest man to be sworn-in as president, has not officially announced his 2024 presidential bid, but has said repeatedly said he would run.
Biden told a reporter June 19 that he would definitely pick Harris as his running mate in 2024 after rumors had floated around that he was considering Republican Wyoming Senator Liz Cheney.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre stated June 13 Biden "is planning" on running in 2024.
"To be clear, as the President has said repeatedly, he plans to run in 2024," she said.
Members of Biden's own party are scrutinizing his plans for 2024 due to his age and low approval numbers, according to a June New York Times report.
The outlet cited interviews with "nearly 50" Democrats, including lawmakers and officials, who had worries about the president's ability to keep running the country. Biden's critics have raised concerns about his frequent verbal gaffes and tendency to meander when delivering impromptu remarks.
Former president Barack Obama's chief strategist David Axelrod told the outlet Biden's age was a "major issue."
"He looks his age and isn't as agile in front of a camera as he once was, and this has fed a narrative about competence that isn't rooted in reality," Axelrod said.
Democratic New York Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez also said she didn't yet know if Biden should run in 2024, refusing to say if she would endorse him in a possible presidential bid.
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