Biden Appears To Pick A Fight With Reporter Who Questions Him About Age

(Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Reagan Reese White House Correspondent
Font Size:

President Joe Biden appeared to want to pick a fight with a TIME reporter while he was questioning him about concerns surrounding his age ahead of the 2024 election, according to the interview transcript.

TIME Washington Bureau Chief Massimo Calabresi and Editor-in-Chief Sam Jacobs conducted an interview with Biden that covered a wide range of topics including the Ukraine-Russia war, the Middle East conflict and the 2024 election. During a rapid fire round of the interview, released Tuesday, the president attempted to quell concerns about his age. (RELATED: Biden Brushes Off Age Fears After Seth Meyers Tells Him ‘It’s A Real Concern For American Voters’)

“The last two years of Presidents, two-term President’s tenure are usually focused on foreign affairs. You are 81 years old, and would be 86 by the time you left office. Large majorities of Americans, including in the Democratic Party, tell pollsters they think you are too old to lead. Could you really do this job as an 85-year old man?” the Time asked, not clarifying which staff member was speaking.

“I can do it better than anybody you know.  You’re looking at me, I can take you too,” the president responded.

“Did you consider not running again because of your age?” the Time followed up.

“No, I didn’t,” Biden responded.

US President Joe Biden speaks at a campaign event at the South Side restaurant in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on May 29, 2024. (Photo by Mandel NGAN / AFP) (Photo by MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images)

US President Joe Biden speaks at a campaign event at the South Side restaurant in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on May 29, 2024. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images)

Biden’s fitness for office came under scrutiny following a special counsel report on his handling of classified documents. Special Counsel Robert Hur concluded in this report that the president would not be charged, but justified his decision by saying the jury might see Biden as “a sympathetic, well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory.”

Over the course of Hur’s two-day, five hour interview with Biden, the president appeared to forget when his vice presidency started and ended as well as the date of his late son, Beau Biden’s death.

Amid the concerns over the report, the president held a press conference in an attempt to ease worries about his fitness for office. Biden criticized Hur for raising questions about Beau’s death, but the later released transcript shows that it was not Hur who brought up the date, rather Biden.

While battling concerns about his age, Biden trails Trump both nationally and across key swing states in hypothetical head-to-head matchups. Ahead of the 2024 election, 76% of American voters are concerned about Biden’s age and health, according to a Feb. 6 NBC poll.

“And what do you say to Americans who are worried about it?” the TIME asked.

“Watch me. Look, name me a president that’s gotten as much done as I’ve gotten done in my first three and a half years,” Biden responded.

“When all of you wrote in Time magazine I couldn’t get any of it done. When you told me there’s no pay, no way, no way he can get a trillion-plus dollar bill done in terms of, to deal with infrastructure, where there’s no way he gets $368 billion for dealing with the environment, where there’s no way I could get the, the, the legislation passed on,” he responded.