Vulnerable Dems won’t say whether Biden should be nominee: ‘President can make his own decisions’

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Vulnerable Dems won’t say whether Biden should be nominee: ‘President can make his own decisions’

Democratic members of Congress facing difficult re-election races in November were unwilling to say whether President Biden should be the party’s presidential nominee following his widely criticized debate performance on Thursday night. 

“The president can make his own decisions about his own campaign,” said Rep. Gabe Vasquez, D-N.M.

I think that we’re going to continue to stay focused on our district, and that’s why I’m here in Congress, is to make sure that I represent them,” he explained when asked if Biden should remain on the Democratic ticket. 

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From left: Vulnerable House Democrats Steven Horsford of Nevada, Pat Ryan of New York, Don Davis of North Carolina and Gabe Vasquez of New Mexico refused to say whether they thought President Biden should remain on the Democratic ticket. (Getty Images)

Vasquez’s district is rated a “Democrat Toss Up” by non-partisan political handicapper Cook Political Report. The Democrat is notably a freshman member of Congress. 

During Thursday night’s debate, Biden seemed hoarse, soft-spoken and at times confused. By the end of the event, reports had emerged alleging Democratic panic, and hosts on CNN and MSNBC admitted it was a less than stellar showing by the president. 

“I’m in a rush,” said Rep. Pat Ryan, D-N.Y., when confronted with a question about whether Biden should be on the Democratic ticket. His district is also highly competitive in 2024 and Cook rated his seat as “Lean Democrat.”

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Rep Steven Horsford and President Biden

Horsford has helped President Biden campaign in Nevada. (Getty Images)

Rep. Steven Horsford, D-Nev., a surrogate for Biden, avoided answering questions posed by Fox News Digital on whether Biden should be the Democratic nominee. His district in Nevada has swung for both parties in the past and is currently rated “Likely Democrat.” 

“I’m trying to get to the vote,” Rep. Don Davis, D-N.C., responded when he was asked if Biden should remain on the Democratic ticket. Davis’ North Carolina district is another “Democrat Toss Up,” per Cook. He is additionally a freshman member, giving him less standing and name identification than longer-serving members. 

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Rep. Don Davis, D-N.C.

Davis is in the midst of a tough re-election battle in North Carolina. (Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

Each of the four Democrats is included on a target list of 37 congressional seats the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) is working to flip in November. The list was first announced in March 2023, with NRCC Chairman Richard Hudson, R-N.C., saying, “These House Democrats should be shaking in their boots.” 

While not in particularly vulnerable districts, some other Democrats refused to say whether Biden should be nominated by the party to be president again in 2024. 

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Aguilar outside Capitol building

House Democratic Caucus Chairman Pete Aguilar didn’t respond to questions about Biden’s status on the presidential ticket.  (Samuel Corum/Getty Images)

“I’m catching up with a colleague here,” said House Democratic Caucus Chairman Pete Aguilar, D-Calif., when he was prompted on whether Biden should remain on the Democratic ticket. 

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When Fox News Digital asked the chairman whether he thought Biden was mentally fit for the job after Thursday’s debate performance, he said, “I appreciate you being here.”

Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-Texas, who similarly doesn’t face a significant challenge to getting re-elected, also did not respond to questions about whether the president should be the Democrats’ nominee come November or whether Biden is mentally fit enough to be in the role. 

Fox News Digital’s Aubrie Spady contributed to this report. 

Get the latest updates from the 2024 campaign trail, exclusive interviews and more at our Fox News Digital election hub.



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