With a provocative warning that right-wing extremists are the greatest threat to America, President Joe Biden kicked off his 2024 reelection bid in a video message released by his campaign on Tuesday.
In his message, the octogenarian president, who once described himself as a “bridge” to the Democratic party’s bench of younger leaders, defied critics who said he should instead opt against reelection and pass the torch to a standard-bearer worthy of uniting the Democratic party against President Donald Trump and supporters who Biden called “MAGA extremists.”
“Personal freedom is fundamental to who we are as Americans. There’s nothing more important, nothing more sacred. That’s been the work of my first term: to fight for our democracy… But you know, around the country MAGA extremists are lining up to take on those bedrock freedoms. Cutting Social Security that you’ve paid for your entire life while cutting taxes for the very wealthy. Dictating what healthcare decisions women can make. Banning books and telling people who they can love. All while making it more difficult for you to be able to vote,” Biden asserted.
Every generation has a moment where they have had to stand up for democracy. To stand up for their fundamental freedoms. I believe this is ours.
That’s why I’m running for reelection as President of the United States. Join us. Let’s finish the job. https://t.co/V9Mzpw8Sqy pic.twitter.com/Y4NXR6B8ly
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) April 25, 2023
By most measures, the president is a vulnerable incumbent who faces resistance within his own party. Nearly half of Democrats polled said they did not want President Biden to run for a second term, though a majority said they would support him at the ballot box.
Among all voters, the president has a weighted average approval rating of 42% according to Real Clear Politics, and an astounding 70 percent of all likely voters don’t want Biden to run again.
The polarized American electorate is generally sour on both the president as well as former President Donald Trump, with majorities expressing their interest in seeing a new face emerge from either or both parties. To be successful, Biden will need to shift attention away from some of his higher-profile failures on foreign policy and inflation and generate left-wing fear of, as he calls it, a “chaotic” return to President Trump in the White House.