Sununu blames ‘Democratic elite’ for Biden’s poor debate performance

New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu (R) took a swipe at the “Democratic elite” in an interview Friday, blaming those in leadership for President Biden’s poor performance in the recent debate.

Sununu highlighted the Democratic National Committee’s (DNC) decision early in the cycle to skip the New Hampshire primary and focus first on South Carolina.

“Let’s remember this is not Joe Biden’s fault,” he told NewsNation Now host Connell McShane. “This is the Democrat elite that said we’re going to try to skip the New Hampshire first-in-the-nation primary, and we’re going to coronate Joe Biden when we know he has a problem.”

“They had their chance, right, and this is what you get when they try to basically play games instead of let a good primary process play out,” the governor added.

His comments refer to the DNC’s decision to hold its first primary in a state considered more representative of the party’s diverse electorate, after calls from state and local Democrats. Sununu, and other politicians in New Hampshire, blasted the president for the decision.

Despite not appearing on the ballot in the Granite State, Biden was declared the winner of the primary through a write-in effort. Still, the state did not award him any delegates.

Sununu praised former President Trump’s performance during Thursday night’s debate in Atlanta, saying the former president “did exactly what he had to do” at the debate.

“He showed competence. He did exactly what he had to do last night, not get too blowhardy,” he said Friday. “He was clearly the adult in the room; Biden just looked absolutely horrible.”

Sununu — one of the last Republican governors in the Northeast, which has become a Democratic stronghold — originally backed former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley in the primary. Haley dropped out of the race in March, paving the way for Trump to become the presumptive GOP nominee.

Despite calling Trump a “loser” in the past, Sununu signaled he would vote for the Republican ticket, no matter who tops the ballot.

In Friday’s interview, the governor added that while he called for the Democratic Party to replace Biden at the top of the ticket last year, he believed it was now too late to do so.

His comments come after Biden’s stumbling debate performance Thursday spurred panic within the Democratic Party, along with discussion of whether the incumbent should step down and allow for an open convention in August. Biden and his campaign have dismissed the calls, saying the president is not going anywhere.

Sununu called the calls for an open convention a “dumb idea.”

“He’s going to the nominee,” Sununu said. “Who’s going to step in with about four months having to raise a half a billion dollars? That’s a hard thing, knowing that you might be the nominee, but that you probably lose as much, if not worse than Biden trying to get your name ID out there.”

But, he added, if Biden “can show strength and come out competent in the second debate, maybe America puts the first debate in the rear-view mirror, and they can hit the reset button.”

At the beginning of the debate Thursday, Biden had a raspy voice, and his team was quick to explain it was a cold. During his rally in North Carolina Friday, Biden’s voice was seemingly back to normal, his energy was up and he did not stumble over his words as much.

Asked by McShane about the turn in events, Sununu dismissed it, giving credit to the teleprompter.

“When he has a teleprompter, 80 percent of the time Biden can keep it together and read from the teleprompter,” he said, adding, “So I think that’s one of the most disconcerting things, is that that’s what we saw last night is clearly the real Joe Biden.

“I think that makes a lot of people nervous, and it makes a lot of people start lining up the dots,” the governor continued. “This is why we’re in the economic crisis, we have. This is why we have an immigration crisis that’s out of control.”

Sununu added, “It’s all making sense now to the American people, and they just want change.”

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