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Newsom doubles down on support for Biden, says he won’t run against Harris


California Gov. Gavin Newsom reiterated his support Wednesday for President Biden to remain the Democratic nominee for president, even as other top Democrats and their supporters cast doubt on Biden’s future and called for him to step aside.

“I’m focused on supporting this campaign,” Newsom said of Biden’s re-election effort. “This candidate is a man of character, decency and honor. Contrast that with the darkness that is Donald Trump.”

Asked by a reporter if he still stood by a promise he made last September not to run against Vice President Kamala Harris for president, Newsom said “Of course. Yes.”

Newsom’s remarks came during a news conference at the Cal Fire Aviation Management Unit in Sacramento to discuss the state’s worsening fire season.

Newsom, along with Harris and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, has been mentioned often as a possible replacement for Biden as the Democratic nominee after Biden’s faltering debate performance June 27. But  Newsom has said repeatedly that he supports Biden, and has campaigned actively for him this past week in New Hampshire, Pennsylvania and Michigan.

“There were record crowds, unprecedented crowds of support for the president of the United states,” Newsom said. “I had 100 media outlets asking the same question, and I think I amply answered my support for the president. The support I saw on the ground was demonstrable.”

Newsom, 56, has been suggested as a younger alternative to Biden, 81. Some analysts have said any attempt at the Democratic convention to bypass Harris, the nation’s first black vice president and first female vice president, however, could cause a severe split in the Democratic Party. And Biden has been adamant that he has no plans to step aside.

On Wednesday, just as it looked as if he may have staved off calls for a new nominee, Biden encountered new headwinds.

House Speaker Emerita Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, said merely “it’s up to the president to decide” if he should stay in the race. Celebrity donor George Clooney wrote an opinion piece in the New York Times saying that Biden should not run. And Democratic senators and lawmakers expressed fresh fears about his ability to beat Republican Donald Trump.

On Capitol Hill, an eighth House Democrat, Rep. Pat Ryan of New York, publicly asked Biden to step aside.

“I want him to do whatever he decides to do,” Pelosi said Wednesday on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” rather than declaring that Biden should stay in. While Biden has said repeatedly that he’s made his decision, she said, “We’re all encouraging him to make that decision, because time is running short.”

With the Republican National Convention set to begin Monday, it’s a crucial moment for the president and his party, as Democrats consider what was once unthinkable — having the incumbent Biden step aside, just weeks before the Democratic National Convention in Chicago that is on track to nominate him as their candidate for reelection in mid-August.

Biden is hosting world leaders in Washington for the NATO summit this week. His party at a crossroads, Biden faces the next test Thursday at a …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Entertainment

      

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