Scarborough splits with Newsom argument it is ‘unhelpful’ to question Biden’s fitness – Washington Examiner

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Morning Joe’s Joe Scarborough came out swinging against one of the Democratic Party’s biggest stars and possible future presidential nominee.

Responding to Gov. Gavin Newsom‘s (D-CA) defense of President Joe Biden’s messy debate performance on Thursday night, the morning show host emphasized how important it is for Democrats to start questioning whether the president is fit for another term.

“We need to deliver for this president in this moment,” Newsom said Thursday night. “With all due respect, the more time we have these conversations, go down the rabbit holes, it is unhelpful to our democracy, the fate and future of our democracy, the world.”

Scarborough was quick to slap down the argument after sparring with co-host Mika Brzezinski all morning about whether Democrats need to start talking about replacing the president.

“The question is, though, despite my belief that Joe Biden has had an extremely successful first term, is it time for him to step down? That’s a question,” he said. “That window has not completely closed, but it is closing. I will say, with all due respect to the governor of California, you are not hurting America, you are not hurting the cause of America by asking these tough questions now.”

Newsom’s comment comes among a wide array of media outlets lamenting Biden’s debate performance, in which he appeared to lack the mental sharpness of his opponent.

Newsom has been floated as a possible replacement for Biden. He is much younger than Biden at 56 and has been viewed as a rising star within the party since he took California’s governorship in 2019. But he refused calls to run previously in 2024 and backed Biden on Thursday after the president’s debate performance.

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At times, Biden appeared to stumble over his words or lose his train of thought, such as when he finished a statement saying, “We finally beat Medicare,” after mentioning strengthening the healthcare system. Vice President Kamala Harris even said Biden started off slow but got stronger as it went on.

The next presidential debate will be held by ABC News on Sept. 10.

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