President Biden has announced his intention to seek reelection in 2024, but some in the GOP are not convinced he should continue his presidential bid. On Tuesday, Rep. Ronny Jackson, R–Texas, circulated a letter signed by some House Republicans demanding that Biden take a cognitive test or withdraw his candidacy.
Jackson led calls for Biden to take a cognitive test back in July, and the latest letter comes as a response to Biden‘s official announcement. The letter cited Biden‘s age, public gaffes, and polls showing many Americans have doubt about the president‘s mental fitness as reasons for the president to take a cognitive test. The deadline for other Republicans to sign onto the letter is Wednesday.
“The American people should have absolute confidence in their President and know that he or she can perform their duties as Head of State and Commander in Chief,” Jackson wrote in the letter.
The Biden administration has repeatedly brushed aside concerns about Biden‘s mental acuity. White House press secretary Karine Jean–Pierre said attacks on Biden over his fitness for office failed in the past.
“You know, we’ve heard these types of attacks or remarks before. And, you know, if you go back to 2020, they said that the president couldn’t do it in 2020 and attacked him there, and he beat them,” Jean–Pierre said. “Maybe they’re forgetting the wins that this president has had over the last couple of years. But I’m happy to remind them anytime.”
Biden‘s lack of interviews with news outlets has also raised questions. According to former CBS White House correspondent Mark Knoller, Biden had granted 33 total interviews as president as of Feb. 8. This is compared to Trump at 147 and Obama at 273 at the same point in their presidencies. The White House recently argued that Biden has had more question–and–answer sessions than his two immediate predecessors combined.
During one of those informal exchanges on Monday, Biden appeared to tease a 2024 presidential announcement.
“I told you I’m planning on running. I’ll let you know real soon,” Biden said.
The White House has yet to comment on the letter from Jackson and other House Republicans. As the 2024 election nears, it remains to be seen if Biden will be able to satisfy these calls or succumb to the pressure and drop out of the race.