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‘Pod Save America’ host says we’re seeing Biden’s ‘arrogant and small’ side

By Miranda Nazzaro - 7/10/24, 3:57 PM EDT

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Editor's note: This story has been corrected to reflect which podcast host made the comments.

Jon Lovett, the “Pod Save America” host and onetime speechwriter to former President Obama, ripped into President Biden’s response to the fallout from his poor debate performance last month, arguing it shows his “arrogant and small” side.

Lovett, in a lengthy post on social platform X Wednesday, noted Biden has been an “extraordinary president,” though his defensive nature in the wake of calls to step aside from the 2024 race has revealed a different side of the incumbent.  

From left, Jon Favreau, Jon Lovett, Dan Pfeiffer and Tommy Vietor participate in the "Pod Save America" panel during the HBO Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour in Beverly Hills, Calif., July 25, 2018. (Richard Shotwell, Invision via AP, file)

“But it’s hard to deny that in the two weeks since the debate, it’s the arrogant and small Joe Biden we’ve seen most — hanging on, bragging, defense, angry, weak,” Lovett wrote on X. “Who else but him? He wonders aloud. Only God could change his mind, he tells us. The stakes for the country are all that matter."

Biden is facing mounting pressure from some within the Democratic Party to withdraw from the 2024 race over concerns he will not be able to defeat former President Trump given the doubts about his age and mental acuity.  

The president has maintained he is not dropping out of the race and rejected the detractors’ demands in a letter to congressional Democrats this week, urging them to unite behind his candidacy. He told ABC News last week that a decision to step down would “depend on” “if the Lord Almighty comes down and tells me that.”  

“The stakes for Joe Biden are beside the point. But it’s worth saying just the same: Joe Biden can leave office as one of the greatest presidents in our lifetimes, who defeated Trump and put his country first at every turn; or he can leave a stubborn old man who allowed hubris and insecurity to destroy his legacy and perhaps our democracy with it,” Lovett wrote.  

“We all have our best and worst selves, scrambling over each other, battling it out in the moments that define us. Where is the Joe Biden we elected? Where is the statesman? I hope that version of him shows up soon. And I hope the people around him know where to look,” he added. 

Lovett hosts “Pod Save America” alongside other former Obama aides Tommy Vietor, Jon Favreau and Dan Pfeiffer. All four said they thought Biden lost the debate and that unless he is able to improve his performance in the coming months dramatically, he will lose the presidential election to former President Trump.  

The Hill reached out to the Biden campaign for comment.  

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