Former Democratic South Carolina Rep. and gubernatorial candidate Joe Cunningham said Thursday that President Joe Biden should not run for a second term.
Cunningham told CNN host John Berman that the country needs a “new generation of leadership” to enter the political realm, rather than re-elect the same “geriatric” politicians.
“I think we need to have a new generation of leadership emerge,” Cunningham said. “Judges in South Carolina have to retire at age 72. Democrats have a very deep bench, and it’s time to allow a new generation to emerge and new talent. President Biden told us himself that he was just a bridge. We’re all in a car driving across that bridge, and it’s time to have the discussion as to what’s on the other side of that bridge.”
The South Carolina Democrat said the president will be 82-years-old when the next election approaches in 2024 and 86 at the end of his second term.
“I’m not sure if any of us know if 86-year-olds who should be running the entire country,” he added.
He said the entire system of government is being run by a “geriatric oligarchy” which appears to contribute to the lack of progress in national and state policymaking. (RELATED: Over 70% Of Independents Think Biden Is Too Old For Office)
“In South Carolina, we’ve got the oldest governor in our state’s history and we have the whole system of government is being run by a geriatric oligarchy. And you know, maybe it’s just a coincidence that we have the oldest Congress in our nation’s history and that we’re at a partisan gridlock and nothing is getting done. Maybe it’s just a coincidence that South Carolina is last in roads and at the bottom of healthcare and education, and we have the oldest governor in our state’s history, but how many coincidences are going to stack up before we notice a correlation?”
Biden endorsed Cunningham during his congressional race in 2018, prompting Berman to ask how the president will feel about him opposing his re-election.
“This isn’t about where we are right now, this is looking to the future,” he said. “He himself said he wants to be a bridge to the future, and again, we’re in this car, we’re driving across this bridge and no one knows what’s on the other side.”
Cunningham’s comments reflect other Democrats’ concerns surrounding Biden’s age. A Democratic strategist recently told The Hill he is “fucking old,” which he said was “not a great look for the White House.”