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Pritzker stands behind Biden for nomination, ‘unless he decides otherwise’

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(The Center Square) – Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker and other Democratic governors from across the country are in Washington D.C. Wednesday to meet with President Joe Biden after last week’s troubling debate performance.

In Thursday’s debate with former Republican President Donald Trump, Biden struggled to complete sentences and other and made other stumbles that he and the White House expressed was clearly “a bad night.” At a White House press briefing Tuesday, Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre was asked a direct question.

“Does President Biden at 81 years old have Alzheimer’s, any form of dementia or degenerative illness that can cause these sorts of lapses,” the reporter asked.

Jean-Pierre said “it’s a no, and I hope you’re asking the other guy this same exact question.”

The question came among more than half an hour of questions about Biden’s cognitive and health issues.

As part of the president’s announced schedule are a media interview Friday and a standalone press conference next week. Jean-Pierre also said Democratic governors will be meeting with the president Wednesday. She wouldn’t disclose what they’ll discuss.

“Our posture is not to dive into private conversations. He’ll have these conversations. I think they’ll be important,” she said. “He’ll hear from them. They’ll hear from him.”

Speaking to CNN Tuesday, Pritzker said Biden has to alleviate concerns within the party and among other Democratic governors.

“I have not heard any of the governors express that, you know, he’s not the right guy,” Pritzker said. “It’s just that I think there are questions that got raised by that debate and hopefully that’s just a one-off situation that the president can rectify.”

Pritzker previewed what Wednesday’s meeting could entail. He said while some in the party have concerns, he was confident Biden will be the nominee.

“Unless he decides otherwise,” Pritzker told CNN. “And so, I think that there’s a healthy conversation that will happen with the president and I hope expressing, you know, what he intends to do going forward in the campaign and reassuring everybody that this is the right course.”

The Democratic National Convention, where Biden’s nomination is expected to be finalized, is in Chicago beginning Aug. 19.

The Republican National Convention is in Milwaukee beginning July 15, where it’s presumed Trump will secure the GOP nomination.

The election is Nov. 5.

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