WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden turned 81 years old on Monday as concerns about his age continue to dominate his 2024 reelection campaign.
Don’t look for a big birthday bash.
No birthday celebration is listed on the official White House schedule of Biden’s day. Instead Biden is set to “pardon” a turkey, the longtime White House tradition ahead of Thanksgiving.
Biden, already the oldest president in U.S. history, would be 86 years old when he completes a second term if reelected.
Biden has often made light of his octogenarian status − “I know I’m 198 years old,” the president joked in June − but poll after poll shows it remains one of his biggest election liabilities.
A poll by Monmouth University in October found 76% of voters believe Biden is too old to effectively serve a second term, compared to 48% who said the same about Republican frontrunner Donald Trump, who is 77 years old.
An especially troubling NBC News poll released Sunday found Biden is trailing in a hypothetical rematch against Trump with young voters between 18 and 34 years old, a group historically that is part of the Democratic base. Trump is backed by 46% of young voters, while Biden is supported by 42%.
The poll found Biden’s approval rating dropped to 40%, an all-time low for the poll and that Trump, despite his multiple indictments and legal troubles, leads nationally in a hypothetical matchup 46%-44%.
Concerns about Biden’s age has prompted a Democratic primary challenge from Rep. Dean Phillips, D-Minn., who said argued for a new generation of Democratic leadership in the White House.
Some Republican candidate have openly questioned whether Biden will finish a second term if he’s reelected, warning voters that a vote for Biden is a vote for Vice President Kamala Harris as president.
Biden has addressed questions about his age routinely since announcing his reelection bid.
“I respect them taking a hard look at it,” Biden said in April, referring to voters who worry about his age. “I’d take a hard look at it as well. I took a hard look at it before I decided to run and I feel good.”
Reach Joey Garrison on X @joeygarrison.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Joe Biden’s birthday overshadowed by age concerns in 2024 election