Joe Biden Tells Rally “I Don’t Debate As Well As I Used To” But “I Know How To Tell The Truth”; Elton John Joins POTUS At Stonewall Event

UPDATE: Elton John joined President Joe Biden in New York later today at the opening of the Stonewall National Monument Visitor Center.

The Pride month celebration was part of a series of post-debate stops Biden has planned today and over the weekend.

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John decried the “misinformation” and “senseless scapegoating” that threatens to “turn back the clock” on LGBTQ+ rights.

“No f–ing way,” John said. “…In this moment too we must take pride and fight on.”

Joe Biden and Elton John
Joe Biden and Elton John

PREVIOUSLY: President Joe Biden was more energetic and forceful at a rally Friday afternoon following his dismal performance at Thursday night’s debate with Donald Trump.

Biden acknowledged as much, as he told the crowd today, “I don’t walk as easily as I used to. I don’t speak as smoothly as I used to. I don’t debate as well as I used to. But I know what I do know. I know how to tell the truth.”

That was a reference to the many false statements Trump made during the debate, many of which went unchecked by CNN’s moderators, Jake Tapper and Dana Bash, and by Biden.

With a weakened voice and verbal stumbles, Biden’s Thursday performance shocked many supporters and unleashed a wave of new calls for him to drop out, including from New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman. Morning Joe‘s Joe Scarborough, who has been a defender of the president’s, raised doubts. While Scarborough said that he is certain Biden can govern, he asked, “Can he run for president in 2024?”

“Donald Trump lied over and over and over again, and Joe Biden couldn’t respond to any of those lies,” Scarborough said.

RELATED: Hollywood Appears Nervous About Joe Biden’s Chances In Debate’s Aftermath

As of now, though, there is little indication Biden is thinking his decision to run for reelection, nor are his closest allies trying to convince him to drop out. Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC) told reporters earlier in the day that he planned to tell Biden to stay the course.

At today’s rally, held in the swing state of North Carolina, Biden told the crowd that “I know how to do this job. I know how to get things done. I know what many Americans know: When you get knocked down you get back up.”

RELATED: Kamala Harris Says Joe Biden Had A “Slow Start” But A “Strong Finish” In Debate, VP Tells Anderson Cooper Race Can’t Be Judged On “Style Points”

Biden also referred to what may have been one of his stronger moments of the evening, when he went through the litany of Trump’s legal troubles. At the rally, he called Trump a “one-man crime wave.”

There is a difference between giving a scripted speech to a rally and participating in an in-studio debate where any question may be asked. But the difference in demeanor last night vs. today was still striking.

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