‘We Are All Nervous’: Dems See SOTU As Make-Or-Break Moment For Biden

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Reagan Reese White House Correspondent
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Democrats are viewing President Joe Biden’s State of the Union (SOTU) address as a make-or-break moment as the 81-year-old faces concerns about his fitness for office and trails former President Donald Trump in the polls, Axios reported.

Biden is set to give his annual SOTU address Thursday, a moment the campaign is reportedly putting a lot of weight on for the rest of the election season. Ahead of the address, some Democrats fear Biden’s infamous gaffes, while others remain confident but understand the importance of a strong showing, Axios reported. (RELATED: KJP Reads From Prepared List Of Times Republicans Misspoke To Argue Joe Biden Is Mentally Fit)

“It’s important that it be good,” Democratic House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer told Axios.

“There’s no doubt that he has the vigor [for a second term], but that’s being questioned,” Hoyer continued. “He’s quick, and he needs to show that.”

U.S. President Joe Biden stops to talk to reporters as he departs the White House on March 01, 2024 in Washington, DC. Biden will spend the weekend at Camp David, where he will prepare for his State of the Union address scheduled for March 07. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

U.S. President Joe Biden stops to talk to reporters as he departs the White House on March 01, 2024 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

While Biden falls behind Trump in several key swing states, the president’s fitness for office has come under increased scrutiny following special counsel Robert Hur’s report on his handling of classified documents. Though Hur decided not to pursue charges against Biden, the report noted that during a five hour interview with the special counsel over Oct. 8 and 9, the president appeared to forget when his vice presidency began and ended and also blanked on the date of his late son’s death.

Biden attempted to quiet the worries surrounding the report in a February press conference, though the president then committed additional gaffes.

Ahead of the SOTU, allies of the president know what is at stake, Axios reported.

“Of the various speeches a president gives, the State of the Union in an election year is a big one,” Democratic Michigan Rep. Dan Kildee told Axios.

Others have looked to the president’s ability to handle “hecklers” as insurance that Biden will have a successful SOTU.

“He owned the Republicans when they tried to heckle him,” California Democratic Rep. Ted Lieu told Axios, adding that he expects the president will do an “outstanding job.”

Even amid some confidence, others are remaining concerned.

“We are all nervous,” a House Democrat told Axios, referencing worries about Biden’s “ability to speak without blowing things.”