Former California Senator says Biden should get two weeks to prove himself after debate


Former California Sen. Barbara Boxer said President Biden should get two weeks to prove to the American people that he’s up for the job of president, amid concerns about his standing at the top of the Democratic ticket.

In an interview with Los Angeles Times columnist Mark Barabak, Boxer said Biden deserves a chance to demonstrate that his shaky debate performance was, in fact, an anomaly.

“The man has done it, time and time again,” Boxer said about Biden, in the interview published Wednesday. “Every time he’s been counted out, he’s come back. Can he do it one more time? I don’t know the answer. But out of respect and admiration for what he’s done, let’s give him the time to do it.”

“And if he can’t, he can’t,” Boxer said. “And there will be someone else.”

Boxer, who the president mentored while they were both serving in the Senate, said she was surprised by Biden’s performance last Thursday.

“We don’t know what happened with Joe,” she told Barabak, who said Boxer speculated that perhaps Biden’s lifelong stutter “kicked in under the studio lights” or that he was feeling the effects from cold medicine.

Nonetheless, Boxer told Barabak, “I think the president owes the country an explanation.”

She stressed the importance of proving that he is capable, saying, “He needs to be out without a script. Without a teleprompter and just face the press, face the public,” adding, “That’s critical.”

The interview comes amid questions about the best path forward for the party, given Biden’s difficult debate last week. Two House Democrats have already called on Biden to step aside, while others are sticking by the president. The White House has said Biden is up to do the job over the next four years and have brushed off the debate as a poor performance.

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