Embattled Biden set to hold ‘big boy’ press conference in bid to save disastrous campaign

An embattled President Biden is set to front the media Thursday afternoon for a “big boy” press conference — the first since his disastrous debate performance threw his 2024 re-election campaign into utter disarray.

The 81-year-old plans to close out the NATO summit in Washington — an event meant to showcase his leadership on the world stage — with the rare, solo news conference as he scrambles to prove to the American public that he’s capable of serving another four years. 

The commander-in-chief is scheduled to take questions from the White House press corps at 5:30 p.m.

President Biden, 81, plans to close out the NATO summit in Washington with a rare, solo news conference on Thursday afternoon. REUTERS

The high-stakes appearance, which White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre has repeatedly referred to as a “big boy press conference” in recent statements, will be a test of his improvisational speaking skills as he prepares to front the crowd of reporters.

His stamina and effectiveness, too, will be under the microscope like never before. 

Ever since his train wreck debate on June 27, Biden has stuck closely to prepared remarks in public as he tries to silence the mounting calls for him to step aside and allow a new Democratic presidential nominee.

In an underwhelming pre-taped interview with ABC News last week, Biden had claimed that his “bad episode” at the debate was simply the result of a cold and not any cognitive issues.

U.S. President Joe Biden and former U.S. President Donald Trump at a presidential debate in Atlanta, Georgia, June 27, 2024. REUTERS
U.S. President Joe Biden saluting with Jill Biden, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and his wife Ingrid Schulerud at a ceremony during NATO’s 75th anniversary summit. REUTERS

Despite making a concerted effort to increase his public visibility, Biden delivered remarks for just 10 minutes at a Philadelphia church and a Harrisburg rally as he campaigned in Pennsylvania on Sunday.

He then made a Trump-style call-in to MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on Monday as he dared disgruntled “elites” in his own party to challenge him publicly while vowing to stay in the race.

On Tuesday, Biden read carefully from the teleprompters in a speech kicking off NATO’s annual summit that featured just a few minor verbal stumbles — including the pronunciation of “Ukraine”.

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