Biden, Harris make joint stop at '24 campaign headquarters to rally staff

By Jeff Mason

WILMINGTON, Delaware (Reuters) -U.S. President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris made a joint stop at their 2024 campaign headquarters on Saturday to rally staff and supporters ahead of a challenging re-election bid that is likely to pit them against former President Donald Trump.

The Democratic leaders and re-election candidates were joined by their respective spouses, first lady Jill Biden and second gentleman Doug Emhoff at the office in Wilmington, Delaware, which is near the Bidens' family home.

The president, 81, is expected to face Trump, 77, the far-and-away frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination in a rematch that Americans largely do not want.

"I’m feeling good about where we are, I really am," Biden told staff and supporters at his campaign headquarters, citing a few recent public opinion polls that have shown him leading Trump in a hypothetical match up.

Other recent polls, however, including a Reuters/Ipsos survey conducted Jan. 22-24, have shown Trump in the lead - and a close race is expected.

Biden has painted Trump, who faces multiple criminal charges, including for efforts to overturn the 2020 election that he lost to the current president, as a threat to democracy.

Trump has portrayed Biden as overseeing a nation in decline.

The tight contest has highlighted deep-seated divisions in the United States and disagreements about everything from Trump's chaotic presidency to the two candidates' respective policies on immigration and abortion.

Biden's re-election bid goes before voters for the first time on Saturday when Democrats hold their inaugural 2024 primary in South Carolina.

(Reporting by Jeff Mason; Additional reporting by Jason Lange in Washington; Editing by Daniel Wallis and Diane Craft)