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‘People are concerned’: C.O. lawmakers, political analyst weigh in on President Biden’s capacities following debate

(Update: Adding video, KTVZ.COM Poll, comments from professor, Merkley, Wyden, Chavez-Deremer)

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Oregon lawmakers and others are weighing in on President Biden's reelection campaign as the conventions and November election loom, amid growing concerns over his age and capacities following the recent debate with Donald Trump.

Oregon Governor Tina Kotek was part of President Biden's meeting held last week with other Democratic governors, among numerous occasions in recent days where the President insisted he does not plan on dropping out of the race.

Many are questioning the president's capacities.  

"The debate was clearly a disaster for Biden," said James Moore, politics and government professor at Pacific University. "It's not that Trump did well. It's that Biden looked really, really bad."

As Kotek and other governors across the country met last week to speak with President Biden, Moore says the support will only go so far.

"He has to stop looking like a little old man who looks like he's going to fall over," Moore said. "And so that takes a different type of campaigning. And so the surrogates can't do that second part. That's Biden alone can do that."

Moore says many Oregon Democratic candidates in tight races are treading lightly when showing their support ahead of the election.

"If you're Andrea Salinas in the Sixth (Congressional District), if you're Janelle Bynum in the Fifth, if you're Val Hoyle in the Fourth, you need to figure out what's happening with Democrats and the way they're supporting Biden before you come out and take a stance," he said.

Bend Mayor Melanie Kebler shared her support on her social media last week.

Both Oregon Senators Wyden and Merkley shared statements with NewsChannel 21, saying they will continue to support the president going into November. Wyden said he's proud of what Democrats and the president have done for the state of Oregon, and Senator Merkley says the choice is clear for Biden.

We reached out to Janelle Bynum for comment on her stance towards Biden but did not hear back.

We asked Republican incumbent Lori Chavez-DeRemer last week about her thoughts on the president's performance,

"People are concerned with that, and they should be," she said. "They should ask that question as they sit down to that table in November. They're going to say, 'Is this the man that can represent Oregon and America on a world stage and protect us?' And I'm not so sure they can answer that question, based on what we saw last Thursday."

So far a total of seven Democratic House members have called for the president to step down ahead of next month's Democratic National Convention. But the president has maintained he's staying in the race, telling ABC News, "If the Lord Almighty came down and said, Joe, get out of the race,' I'd get out of the race. The Lord Almighty is not coming down."

Article Topic Follows: Government-politics

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Isabella Warren

Isabella Warren is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Isabellahere.


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