Pelosi Suggests That Biden Should Reconsider Decision To Stay In Race

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of Calif., tears her copy of President Donald Trump's s State of the Union address after he delivered it to a joint session of Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2020. Vice President Mike Pence is at left. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Former Speaker Nancy Pelosi was non-committal Wednesday morning when asked if she supported President Joe Biden continuing his reelection bid — something the incumbent has repeatedly told Hill Democrats he would do.

“It’s up to the president to decide if he is going to run,” Pelosi said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “We’re all encouraging him to make that decision, because time is running short.”

When pressed on her answer, as Biden has told Hill Democrats, donors and voters that he plans to stay in the race, Pelosi still demurred: “I want him to do whatever he decides to do.”

The morning appearance highlights the simmering Capitol Hill concerns about Biden’s viability against former President Donald Trump.

Pelosi, for her part, urged a hold on such discussions until after the president finishes hosting the NATO summit this week. Biden will have a press conference on Thursday.

Pelosi is one of the most visible and respected senior figures in the party — and her words carry great weight among rank-and-file members. She previously expressed “full confidence” in Biden and spoke glowingly of his record in office on Wednesday morning.

Rep. Mark Takano (D-Calif.), who’d previously privately voiced concerns about Biden’s candidacy, said in a brief interview he hadn’t seen Pelosi’s comments but said, after hearing a description of them, “I associate myself with Speaker Pelosi’s remarks.”

“I don’t want to litigate any more of this in public. It’s the president’s prerogative right now,” he said.

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