Biden to meet Democratic governors amid concern over his fitness for election race

US president Joe Biden is set to meet Democratic governors on Wednesday as he attempts to gather support among his party’s leaders after last week’s unconvincing debate performance. Tensions are rising within the party about his fitness to take on Donald Trump or to serve four more years in office.

After Biden’s debate performance, widely seen as disastrous, several Democrats, having doubts about the 81-year-old’s fitness, have called on him to attend press conferences and other events to ease concerns about his sharpness. On Tuesday, Lloyd Doggett, a congressman from Texas, became the first lawmaker from Biden's party to publicly call for him to step aside. 

In an attempt to soften the blows, Biden has invited all Democratic governors to meet on Wednesday, either in person or virtually. The governors, who have been some of the president’s most faithful supporters but who also include possible replacements, such as Gavin Newsom and Gretchen Whitmer, held their own virtual meeting on Monday. Biden will also take part in a televised interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos on Friday.

Boost for Trump

As Biden grapples with political fallout and low approval ratings, his 78-year-old opponent received a huge boost this week. The Supreme Court ruled that all former presidents have partial immunity from criminal prosecution: a total immunity applies to acts carried out as part of the president's official duties, but "unofficial acts", in a private capacity, are not covered.

In the criminal case against Trump for allegedly trying to subvert the 2020 election result that gave victory to Biden, a lower court judge will have to determine which actions were carried out in his capacity as president, a process that could take months. Any trial is therefore unlikely to start before the 5 November election.



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