NYT editorial board calls on Biden to drop out

The New York Times editorial board called on President Biden to suspend his campaign after his shaky debate performance against former President Trump on Thursday.

“Mr. Biden has said that he is the candidate with the best chance of taking on this threat of tyranny and defeating it. His argument rests largely on the fact that he beat Mr. Trump in 2020,” the board wrote. “That is no longer a sufficient rationale for why Mr. Biden should be the Democratic nominee this year.”

The 81-year-old Biden appeared on the Atlanta, Ga., debate stage with a hoarse voice and a slight cough. The issue of his age and mental competency has been a sore point for his campaign and the debate was seen as an opportunity to show the country he is still fit to serve.

His performance sparked widespread fear among Democrats, and reignited the conversation about whether Biden should step down and allow someone else to take on Trump.

Biden’s campaign and the White House have said he’s not going anywhere. The Times said it was obvious Biden is not the man he was four years ago, calling him “the shadow of a great public servant.”

“He struggled to explain what he would accomplish in a second term. He struggled to respond to Mr. Trump’s provocations. He struggled to hold Mr. Trump accountable for his lies, his failures and his chilling plans,” the Times said. “More than once, he struggled to make it to the end of a sentence.”

“There is no reason for the party to risk the stability and security of the country by forcing voters to choose between Mr. Trump’s deficiencies and those of Mr. Biden,” the board said.

Still, if Biden does not drop out, the board said it would endorse him over Trump.

Calling for a new nominee this late in the campaign is a decision not to be taken lightly but it reflects the seriousness of Trump’s threat to American democracy, the board argued.

Similarly, The Economist said that Biden should step aside and make room for someone new, reiterating its statement from November 2022, when the outlet said Biden should not seek reelection. On Friday, the Economist argued his “last and greatest public service” should be suspending his campaign.

After Biden’s misstep on Thursday, he held a campaign stop in North Carolina where he sought to tame the panic. He delivered a more energized speech Friday, but the Times argued its not enough to save him.

“Mr. Biden answered an urgent question on Thursday night. It was not the answer that he and his supporters were hoping for. But if the risk of a second Trump term is as great as he says it is — and we agree with him that the danger is enormous — then his dedication to this country leaves him and his party only one choice.”

Suspending his campaign, the Times said, is “the best service that Biden can provide to a country that he has nobly served for so long.”

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