Biden’s battleground map begins to fracture – Washington Examiner

President Joe Biden’s electoral path to staying in the White House runs through a handful of battleground states. But that route is quickly fading.

The continued fallout from his disastrous debate performance that raised questions about his mental acuity and his electability against former President Donald Trump includes key states shifting in the GOP’s favor and more Democrats hitting the panic button.

The University of Virginia Center for Politics’s election forecaster, Larry Sabato’s Crystal Ball, downgraded a state that’s historically been a Democratic stronghold, Minnesota, from “likely Democratic” to “leans Democratic,” putting it one notch away from the toss-up states of Arizona, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin.

Michigan was also moved into the toss-up category from “leans Democratic.”

“We are solidly behind President Biden here in Michigan, and we’re very focused on the work that we know we need to do to win in November,” Michigan Democratic Party Chairwoman Lavora Barnes told the Washington Examiner.

New Hampshire and Virginia, where Democrats likewise typically perform well, are also being closely watched.

A spokesperson for Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA) did not deny a Washington Post report Friday that said the Virginia Democrat was organizing a group of Democratic senators to lobby Biden to exit the race.

The PR messaging that emerged from a White House meeting this week between Biden and 20 Democratic governors was they were on board with their party leader, in contrast to the trickle of sitting House Democrats who say he needs to withdraw.

But behind the scenes and reading between the lines, there are signs that the cracks continue to widen throughout the party.

Govs. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D-NM) and Janet Mills (D-ME) questioned whether Biden could still win their blue states, according to Politico. The president in 2020 carried New Mexico by 11 percentage points and Maine by nine.

Gov. Maura Healey (D-MA), a close Biden ally who sits on his campaign advisory board, on Friday called on the president to consider dropping out and “carefully evaluate” his political future.

In another sign of splintering support on Capitol Hill, Rep. Brad Sherman (D-CA) noted in a series of social media posts that “counter to popular belief, the rules of the Democratic Party do NOT require that pledged delegates vote for Biden at the convention.”

“Party rules require delegates’ votes, ‘reflect the sentiments of those who elected them,’ at the time the delegates cast their ballots,” Sherman wrote. “Democratic Primary voters have one overarching sentiment: We need a candidate who will beat Donald Trump.”

Four sitting members of Congress have said Biden should no longer be the name at the top of the ticket: Reps. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), Lloyd Doggett (D-TX), Seth Moulton (D-MA), and Mike Quigley (D-IL).


A defiant Biden told supporters Friday at a campaign rally that he had no intention of calling it quits.

“I am going to run and I’m going to win again,” the president said in Madison, Wisconsin.

Marisa Schultz contributed to this report.