Biden meets with Black Caucus amid calls to end campaign 


Members of the Congressional Black Caucus on Monday met with President Biden, buckling down on their support for Biden amid growing calls from white Democratic members for the president to drop his 2024 re-election bid. 

Sources familiar with the matter shared with The Hill that Rep. Steven Horsford (D-Nev.), chair of the caucus, extended the invitation to Biden. 

Horsford expressed his support for the president in a statement earlier in the day, becoming the latest in a line of CBC members to do so. 

A spokesperson for the Biden campaign said the call was to “discuss the stakes of the 2024 election and their shared commitment to beating Donald Trump this November.”

Monday’s meeting followed a Sunday call between Democratic committee leaders in which four senior Democrats called on Biden to exit the race, citing a poor debate performance as cause for concern. Five democrats have publicly called for Biden to suspend his campaign. 

Ahead of Monday’s call, Rep. James Clayburn (D-S.C.) said he wasn’t even interested in discussing Biden’s fitness but was ready to discuss the GOP’s “Project 2025” instead. 

“That’s all I’m going to talk about,” Clyburn said. 

Clyburn has also indicated he would embrace Vice President Harris should Biden choose to step aside. 

Support from Black leaders is crucial for Biden to maintain the Black-led coalition that sent him to the White House in 2020. But that coalition has been dispersing, recent polls show. 

Though a June Ipsos poll found that 42 percent of Black Americans said they will definitely vote for Biden, compared to 4 percent who said they will vote for former President Trump, this number is significantly lower than the 87 percent of Black support Biden received in 2020, according to CNN exit polls. 

But Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) said there’s no group more loyal to the Democratic Party — or this president — than the Black community. He’s expecting Biden to ask members of the CBC to help with the campaign, a request Thompson said he’s happy to fulfill. 

“A lot of us have been all over the country speaking on his behalf already,” Thompson said. “We might get asked to become surrogates for the campaign; I don’t think that would be a problem. And obviously if, given an opportunity, … we can defend his policies. 

Meanwhile, some Black voter experts are warning that it may actually be infighting among Democrats that could cost them Black voter support in November — not Biden’s health. 

Still, Biden’s health concerns are at the top of some CBC members’ minds — even as they maintain their conviction that Biden is the only choice come November. 

Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) acknowledged that Biden’s physical health is not what it once was. “But mentally, he’s strong,” he quickly added. “And he’s made great decisions over the last three-and-a-half years.”

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