Election 2024

Lesbian congresswoman Angie Craig calls on Joe Biden to step down

Minnesota Rep. Angie Craig (D-2) speaks at a press conference in Hastings on July 2, 2024 with about a bill to burb fentanyl sales via social media with Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN).
Minnesota Rep. Angie Craig (D-2) speaks at a press conference in Hastings on July 2, 2024 with about a bill to burb fentanyl sales via social media with Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN). Photo: Sam Woodward/USA TODAY / USA TODAY NETWORK

Out Rep. Angie Craig (D-MN) has called on President Joe Biden to drop out of the election following his performance at the first debate with Donald Trump two weeks ago. Two other out Democratic elected officials—Rep. Mark Takano (D-CA) and Massachusetts Gov. Maura Healey (D)—are expressing concerns about Biden.

“I have great respect for President Biden’s decades of service to our nation and his steadfast commitment to making our country a better place,” Craig said in a statement. “However, given what I saw and heard from the President during last week’s debate in Atlanta, coupled with the lack of a forceful response from the President himself following that debate, I do not believe that the President can effectively campaign and win against Donald Trump.”

“This is not a decision I’ve come to lightly, but there is simply too much at stake to risk a second Donald Trump presidency. That’s why I respectfully call on President Biden to step aside as the Democratic nominee for a second term as President and allow for a new generation of leaders to step forward.”

Craig is part of a small but growing number of Democratic elected officials who are publicly calling for Biden to step down following his debate performance. Reps. Lloyd Doggett (D-TX), Mike Quigley (D-IL), Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), and Seth Moulton (D-MA) have all publicly said that Biden should remove himself from the election.

Biden said that he is not going to resign either as president or as a candidate in an interview last week with George Stephanopoulos.

“I don’t think anybody’s more qualified to be president or win this race than me,” he told Stephanopoulos.

Other Democrats are speaking more privately on the matter. On Sunday, Reps. Jerry Nadler (D-NY), Adam Smith (D-WA), Joe Morelle (D-NY), and Takano were in a Zoom meeting with House Democratic leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) when they said that Biden should drop out of the election, one unnamed person who was on the call and three others who were familiar with the call told CBS News.

Several other Democrats on the call also had their doubts about Biden but stopped short of asking him to step down.

None of the Democrats are publicly calling for Bidne to step down, and several have released statements following the CBS News report reiterating their support for Biden.

Gov. Healey, who is one of the Biden-Harris campaign’s surrogates, also asked for Biden to “carefully evaluate whether he remains our best hope to defeat Donald Trump” in a statement Friday.

He “saved our democracy in 2020 and has done an outstanding job over the last four years,” she said in the statement.

“The best way forward right now is a decision for the President to make. Over the coming days, I urge him to listen to the American people and carefully evaluate whether he remains our best hope to defeat Donald Trump,” she said. “Whatever President Biden decides, I am committed to doing everything in my power to defeat Donald Trump.”

She is the first Democratic governor to publicly suggest that Biden should drop out of the race.

Biden was asked about Healey’s statement on Friday evening at an event in Wisconsin.

“Maura Healey didn’t say anything when I was in the room, OK?” he responded.

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