Illinois Gov JB Pritzker touted as possible rival for ailing President Joe Biden in 2024 primary


Joe Biden could face primary challenge if he decides to run for White House again in 2024, with Illinois Governor JB Pritzker touted as possible rival for ailing president, 79

  • President Joe Biden may face a challenger in the Democratic primary election
  • Analysts speculate billionaire JB Pritzker is interested in running for president
  • Pritzker said Wednesday it is ‘certainly possible’ Biden could face a challenger
  • The Illinois governor also alleged it was ‘not something I’m encouraging’
  • Biden’s team insists he will run again and buckle down campaign plans soon 
  • VP Kamala Harris echoed the assertion saying this week: ‘I will be his ticket mate’

President Joe Biden may face a primary challenge if he runs for re-election in 2024. 

Analysts speculate Illinois Governor JB Pritzker may be eyeing the White House despite his claims that his focus remains on the state’s upcoming gubernatorial race.

Pritzker said Wednesday it is ‘certainly possible’ Biden would face a Democrat challenger, but added: ‘It’s not something I’m encouraging.’ 

Vice President Kamala Harris has seemingly tried to shut down rumors that she may be seeking the role of America’s top chief. 

‘Joe Biden is running for re-election, and I will be his ticket mate,’ Harris told CNN earlier this week. ‘Full stop.’ 

Meantime, an overwhelming and growing majority of Americans say the U.S. is heading in the wrong direction under Biden, including nearly eight in 10 Democrats.

Joe Biden (pictured Friday) may face a primary challenger if he runs for re-election in 2024

Joe Biden (pictured Friday) may face a primary challenger if he runs for re-election in 2024

Biden’s political operatives insist he will run for president again in 2024, despite concerns about his viability.

However, political analysts aren’t convinced the incumbent will be seeking the Democratic nomination unopposed. 

Rumors arose about Pritzker’s interest in the White House after he traveled to New Hampshire last month to speak at the state’s Democratic convention.

The billionaire has also raised eyebrows with recent donations to governors in battleground states, but still insists he’s not rooting for anyone to challenge Biden.

‘That’s not something I’m encouraging, but it’s certainly possible,’ Pritzker, 57, told NBC News last Wednesday. ‘We’ve seen it in the past.’

CNN analysts note the only time an incumbent was ‘seriously challenged’ for the Democratic nominee was in 1980 when Jimmy Carter ran for re-election and was challenged by Massachusetts Sen. Ted Kennedy.

Although Carter narrowly won the primary, securing the presidential nomination, he was blown out in the general election by Ronald Reagan.

Despite his comment that a challenger was possible, Pritzker insists he is focusing his energy and resources on securing a second term as governor in Illinois. 

‘For me, I’m focused on my reelection and what it is I can do for the people of Illinois,’ the governor explained. Pritzker’s family owns the Hyatt hotel chain and reportedly has a net worth of more than $3.6 billion. 

Analysts speculate Illinois Governor JB Pritzker (pictured June 13) may be eyeing the White House despite his claims that his focus remains on the state's upcoming gubernatorial race

Analysts speculate Illinois Governor JB Pritzker (pictured June 13) may be eyeing the White House despite his claims that his focus remains on the state’s upcoming gubernatorial race

Pritzker (right) said Wednesday it is 'certainly possible' Biden (left) would face a Democrat challenger, but added: 'It's not something I'm encouraging.' The pair are pictured together in Illinois in July 2021

Pritzker (right) said Wednesday it is ‘certainly possible’ Biden (left) would face a Democrat challenger, but added: ‘It’s not something I’m encouraging.’ The pair are pictured together in Illinois in July 2021

Those familiar with Biden’s campaign allege he has been selling fellow Democrats on his re-election plan at fundraisers and other party events in recent weeks.

The insiders claim Biden will promote himself as the only Democrat who can beat former President Donald Trump, who has hinted at running again.

‘It’s basically the same argument he was making at this point in 2018 about why he thought he might have to run,’ a Democrat allegedly privy to Biden’s campaign told NBC News on Wednesday. ‘He would just walk through every candidate.’ 

White House insiders claim the president will finalize his campaign plans following the November midterms and file paperwork for re-election in early 2023.

His aides also claimed he is using the midterm elections as a ‘test run for 2024,’ similar to how he used the 2018 midterms to set up his 2020 presidential bid.

‘It’s the kind of thing you can only show, not tell,’ a top White House adviser told the news outlet.

Vice President Kamala Harris has seemingly tried to shut down rumors that she may be seeking the role of America's top chief. She told CNN earlier this week: 'Joe Biden is running for reelection, and I will be his ticket mate. Full stop'

Vice President Kamala Harris has seemingly tried to shut down rumors that she may be seeking the role of America’s top chief. She told CNN earlier this week: ‘Joe Biden is running for reelection, and I will be his ticket mate. Full stop’

Meantime, Biden's popularity has experienced a deep downturn in recent months amid growing pessimism over the economy. An overwhelming and growing majority of Americans say the U.S. is heading in the wrong direction under Biden (pictured Friday), including nearly eight in 10 Democrats

Meantime, Biden’s popularity has experienced a deep downturn in recent months amid growing pessimism over the economy. An overwhelming and growing majority of Americans say the U.S. is heading in the wrong direction under Biden (pictured Friday), including nearly eight in 10 Democrats

But political experts still question if those efforts will be enough for Biden to secure another four years living on Pennsylvania Avenue.

Biden’s popularity has experienced a deep downturn in recent months amid growing pessimism over the economy. 

Eighty-five percent of U.S. adults say the country is on the wrong track, and 79 percent describe the economy as poor, according to a new survey from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.

The findings suggest Biden faces fundamental challenges as he tries to motivate voters to cast ballots for Democrats in November’s midterm elections.

Inflation has consistently eclipsed the healthy 3.6 percent unemployment rate as a focal point for Americans, who are dealing with particularly sharp spikes in gasoline and food prices. 

The average cost of consumer goods rose 8.6 percent in May, according to the most recently available data, the highest increase since 1981.

Driving the record surge was a 48.7 percent increase in gas prices and nearly 40 percent increase in airfare, as millions across the country are feeling pain at the pump over the steep months-long rise.

Even among Democrats, 67 percent call economic conditions poor.

‘He’s doing the best he can – I can’t say he’s doing a good job,’ said Chuck McClain, 74. ‘But his opposition is so bad. I just don’t feel the Democratic Congress is doing enough.’

A majority of people still don't approve of President Joe Biden's work in office despite easing from a record high in May

A majority of people still don’t approve of President Joe Biden’s work in office despite easing from a record high in May

A staggering number of voters also believe the country is off on the wrong track amid multiple supply shortages, a possible looming recession and record inflation

A staggering number of voters also believe the country is off on the wrong track amid multiple supply shortages, a possible looming recession and record inflation

The poll shows only 39 percent of Americans approve of Biden’s leadership overall, while 60 percent disapprove. 

His approval rating fell to its lowest point of his presidency last month and remains at that level. 

The Democratic president gets hit even harder on the economy, with 69 percent saying they disapprove of him on the issue. Among Democrats, 43 percent disapprove of Biden’s handling of the economy.

Just 14 percent say things are going in the right direction, down slightly from 21 percent in May and 29 percent in April. Through the first half of 2021, about half of Americans said the country was headed in the right direction, a number that has steadily eroded in the past year.

But despite signs of a possible economic recession, consumer spending has largely kept pace and hiring remains brisk in a sign that families and businesses have been able to withstand some of the economic pain.

In an interview last month, Biden traced the decline in his popularity to increases in gas prices that began a year ago. 

He said that prices shot up further with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February. But he rejected claims by Republican lawmakers and some major economists that his $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package from last year contributed to inflation, noting that price increases were a global phenomenon.

‘We’re in a stronger position than any nation in the world to overcome this inflation,’ Biden said. ‘If it’s my fault, why is it the case in every other major industrial country in the world that inflation is higher?’

People's pessimism is primarily with the economy, which almost eight in 10 Americans surveyed said was in poor condition

People’s pessimism is primarily with the economy, which almost eight in 10 Americans surveyed said was in poor condition

But it seems like Americans have been disenchanted with Biden for months.

The president’s average approval rating dipped below 50 percent in mid-August, according to poll aggregator FiveThirtyEight. 

His disapproval rating exceeded that threshold in late October. 

Many interviews taken for the AP’s poll were conducted after the Supreme Court struck down Roe v. Wade on June 24, allowing states to ban abortion – a decision opposed by a majority of the American people in earlier polls, which could also have contributed to the continued slump in the national mood.

The national dissatisfaction is bipartisan, the poll shows. Ninety-two percent of Republicans and 78 percent of Democrats say the country is headed in the wrong direction. Since last month, the percentage of Democrats saying the country is headed in the wrong direction rose from 66 percent.

In a CBS News poll released two days after the Supreme Court overturned Roe, 52 percent of respondents said the move was ‘a step backwards’ for the country while just 31 percent said the opposite.

More than eight in 10 people said things in America today are going badly in that survey, taken June 24 and 25. 

Biden’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic remains a relative bright spot, with 53 percent of Americans saying they approve of his handling of that issue. 

On the other hand, only 36 percent say they approve of Biden’s handling of gun policy; 62 percent disapprove.

Overall, survey participants say the seemingly failing economy is their top concern.  

Biden, the oldest U.S. president in history, has also faced criticisms since the start of his presidency about his cognitive competency. PICTURED: Vice President Kamala Harris and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi watch as Biden gives his State of the Union address. Harris could be seen mouthing the correct 'Ukrainian' when Biden made the error

Biden, the oldest U.S. president in history, has also faced criticisms since the start of his presidency about his cognitive competency. PICTURED: Vice President Kamala Harris and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi watch as Biden gives his State of the Union address. Harris could be seen mouthing the correct ‘Ukrainian’ when Biden made the error

Biden, the oldest U.S. president in history, has also faced criticisms since the start of his presidency about his cognitive competency.

Many claims were lobbed at Biden by Donald Trump during their election contest, although 75 year-old Trump has himself faced claims about his own cognitive health. 

In April, the 46th president, while finishing a speech about the nation’s ongoing supply chain crisis, turned around and stuck his hand out as if to shake hands and then turned his back on the main audience before wandering off stage.  

The 79-year-old president had earlier claimed that he had served as a ‘full professor’ at the University of Pennsylvania despite never teaching a class at the school, in yet another gaffe that has Republicans questioning Biden’s cognitive abilities.

During his State of the Union address in March, Biden had a gaffe during his speech amid the crisis in Ukraine, confusing the nation facing invasion with Iran.

In February, more than three dozen House Republicans demanded Biden submit to a cognitive test and outlined their concerns about his fitness for office in a searing letter.

Former White House physician Rep. Ronny Jackson had also penned a similar letter in June 2021 that did not appear to receive a public reply from Biden’s team.

Forgetting numbers, confusing Libya and Syria, calling Kamala ‘president’ and hot mic blunders: Biden’s gaffes that have raised health concerns

As the oldest person ever sworn in to the White House, President Joe Biden has faced questions and concerns over his mental as well as physical acuity since taking one one of the most stressful jobs in the world.

But aside from his advanced age, Biden, 79, has worried even supporters with numerous gaffes over the year he’s been in office.

Most recently, Rep. Ronny Jackson pointed out in a letter demanding Biden take a cognitive test that one of the first signs of Alzheimer’s Disease is erratic changes in mood or personality.

January 24, 2022 – Biden calls Peter Doocy a ‘stupid son of a b*****’

‘You displayed this type of mood change during a cabinet meeting on when you apparently did not know your microphone was on after finishing your opening remarks, and you called a White House reporter a “stupid son of a b****”in response to a question asked on inflation,’ Jackson claimed.

He was referring to a hot mic moment in late January during which Biden criticized Fox News reporter Peter Doocy, after which the president personally apologized to the journalist. 

Biden has also been known to have trouble with the names of his most senior officials, foreign leaders and even countries. 

At last year’s G7 in June, the president bungled the names of Syria and Libya multiple times when discussing security efforts with Russia. The White House was later forced to issue a clarification.

Another embarrassing foreign policy faux pas occurred in September 2021, when Biden appeared to forget the name of Australia’s prime minister — who was appearing via video link right beside him. 

While announcing a historic security deal between the UK, US and Australia, Biden told Britain’s Boris Johnson, ‘Thank you, Boris,’ before turning to Australia’s Scott Morrison and saying: ‘And I want to thank that fella down under. Thank you very much pal.’

Biden has seemingly even struggled with names of people he speaks to more regularly. He gave a speech marking International Women’s Day in March of last year, during which he was promoting two female officers to four-star generals.

March 8, 2022   – Slipping and forgetting Lloyd Austin’s name 

The president slipped up during the March 8 speech while trying to remember Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin’s name.

‘I want to thank Sec-, the former general, I keep calling him “General.” My – the guy who runs that outfit over there,’ Biden said, before quickly adding, ‘I want to make sure we thank the secretary for all he’s done.’

A trip to Texas that same month to visit a Houston-area vaccination center saw Biden apparently lose his train of thought and become confused. He even asked, ‘What am I doing here?’ while trying to get himself back on track. 

On multiple occasions Biden has also appeared to refer to Vice President Kamala Harris as the ‘president.’ During a commencement speech at South Carolina State University in late December, Biden remarked: ‘Of course, President Harris is a proud Howard alum.’

He made the mistake again more recently, declaring during a voting rights speech in Georgia on January 11 that ‘President Harris and I stood on the United States Capitol.’

Biden has been known to get dates confused as well — in May 2021 he recalled traveling via Amtrak to see his mother while he was vice president in 2013. But his mother had died in 2010.  

The apparent issues began long before Biden took the White House. When he was on the campaign trail in September 2020, then-candidate Biden was widely mocked for saying ‘200 million people have died’ from COVID-19 under Donald Trump’s watch. The number was around 200,000 at the time.

And while president, Biden had to be corrected on a statistic regarding COVID-19 vaccinations. During a COVID-19 White House press conference, Biden attempted to say, ’57… excuse me… 570… I don’t want to read it, I’m not sure I got the right number…’ Chief Medical Adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci aided him to say the figure was ’57 million.’

 Confusing Libya and Syria 

'I'm hopeful that we can find an accommodation where we can save the lives of people in — for example, in — in Libya,' the president said, mentioning the north African country for the third time instead of Syria, in the Middle East. Biden is pictured in Cornwall, United Kingdom on June 13

‘I’m hopeful that we can find an accommodation where we can save the lives of people in — for example, in — in Libya,’ the president said, mentioning the north African country for the third time instead of Syria, in the Middle East. Biden is pictured in Cornwall, United Kingdom on June 13

The White House later brushed the confusion off, confirming that it was indeed, Syria, the country where Russia and the US have been involved in a decade-long civil war, which the president was referring to

The White House later brushed the confusion off, confirming that it was indeed, Syria, the country where Russia and the US have been involved in a decade-long civil war, which the president was referring to

Biden repeatedly confused Syria with Libya while discussing ways of working with Russia during a press conference at the G7 on June 13.

The 78-year-old gaffe machine spoke of working with Russian President Vladimir Putin to provide economic assistance to the people of Libya, prompting some confused glances from the press pack at the G7 summit in Cornwall, England.

‘I’m hopeful that we can find an accommodation where we can save the lives of people in — for example, in — in Libya,’ the president said, mentioning the north African country for the third time instead of Syria, which is in the Middle East. The White House later brushed the confusion off, confirming that the president was indeed referring to Syria, the country where Russia and the US have been involved in a decade-long civil war.

Tripping while climbing the Air Force One stairs

Over the years, President Joe Biden has made numerous gaffes and mix-ups and has even been caught falling. Pictured: Biden falling while walking up the stairs of Air Force One on March 19

Over the years, President Joe Biden has made numerous gaffes and mix-ups and has even been caught falling. Pictured: Biden falling while walking up the stairs of Air Force One on March 19

On March 19, he was caught tripping up the stairs as he boarded Air Force One at Joint Base Andrews

On March 19, he was caught tripping up the stairs as he boarded Air Force One at Joint Base Andrews

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On March 19, video captured Biden tripping up the stairs as he boarded Air Force One at Joint Base Andrews. 

In the clip, Biden stumbles as he walks up the airstairs. He grabs the hand railing to catch his balance, but then loses his footing two additional times.

During the third stumble, he falls to his knees. However, after brushing off his leg, he reaches the top of the plane and gives a salute before disappearing inside.

White House Deputy Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre later told reporters that Biden was ‘100 percent fine’ and preparing for his trip in Atlanta. 

‘It’s pretty windy outside. It’s very windy. I almost fell coming up the steps myself,’ she said. 

Just one day earlier, during a press conference on March 18 (pictured), he referred to Vice President Kamala Harris as 'President Harris'

Just one day earlier, during a press conference on March 18 (pictured), he referred to Vice President Kamala Harris as ‘President Harris’

Just one day earlier, Biden accidentally referred to Vice President Kamala Harris as ‘President Harris.’

The gaffe occurred during a press conference on March 18, during which he lauded his administration for being close to meeting their goal of 100 million COVID-19 vaccine doses in his first 100 days in office.

‘Now when President Harris and I took a virtual tour of a vaccination center in Arizona not long ago, one of the nurses on that, on that tour injecting people, giving vaccinations, said that each shot was like administering a dose of hope,’ Biden said.

Harris was standing behind Biden as the president carried on with his speech, but did not correct himself.

Later that day, when the White House released the transcript of his speech, Harris’s proper title was inserted with brackets.

On March 9, while making a speech, Biden seemed to forget the name of Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin (above)

On March 9, while making a speech, Biden seemed to forget the name of Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin (above)

In a speech on March 9, Biden seemed to fumble with his words and forget the name of his Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin.

‘I want to thank Sec – the former general – I keep calling him “General,”‘ Biden said.

‘My – the guy who runs that outfit over there. I want to make sure we thank the Secretary for all he’s done to try to implement what we’ve just talked about, and for recommending these two women for promotion.’  The slip-occurred despite the fact that just a few minutes earlier, he had mentioned Austin’s name in the speech without an issue.

On Election Day, in November, Biden introduced a crowd to his granddaughter, but referred to her as his son

On Election Day, in November, Biden introduced a crowd to his granddaughter, but referred to her as his son

During an Election Day speech in Philadelphia, Biden stumbled over his words and confused his granddaughter with his late son, Beau Biden. 

Biden told the crowd: ‘I want to introduce you to two of my granddaughters…this is my son, Beau Biden who a lot of you helped elect to the Senate in Delaware.’

The commander-in-chief had meant to introduce the crowed to Natalie, Beau’s daughter, but hadn’t just mixed up the name but the person – he also put his arm around Finnegan Biden, Hunter’s daughter.

He finally corrected himself as he draped his arm around Natalie’s shoulder and said: ‘This is Natalie, this is Beau’s daughter.’  

Beau Biden passed away in 2015 after a months-long battle with glioblastoma, one of the deadliest types of brain cancer. 

TOLD STATE SENATOR IN WHEELCHAIR TO STAND UP

In 2008, Biden told then-Missouri state senator Chuck Graham to stand up for the crowd at a rally, before realizing he was in a wheelchair

In 2008, Biden told then-Missouri state senator Chuck Graham to stand up for the crowd at a rally, before realizing he was in a wheelchair

Not all of Biden’s gaffes occurred in the 2020s or even the 2010s. In fact, some happened in the early aughts.

In September 2008, after Biden had been named former President Barack Obama’s running mate, he attended a campaign rally in Missouri.

It was there that he called on then-Missouri state senator Chuck Graham, who passed away last year. to stand up for the crowd.

‘I’m told Chuck Graham, state senator, is here. Stand up Chuck, let ’em see you,’ Biden said.

It was at that moment he realized Graham was in a wheelchair due to muscular dystrophy.

‘Oh, God love you. What am I talking about. I’ll tell you what, you’re making everybody else stand up, though, pal.’

According to the Columbia Tribune, Graham said he was never offended by the mistake.        

 

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