New group unveils petition urging Biden to ‘pass the torch’

A new group, “Pass the Torch, Joe,” has formed to circulate a petition among Democratic voters that urges President Biden to step aside from the 2024 race.

The group is made up of Democratic activists, organizers and voters who are focused on beating former President Trump in November, according to its website.

The petition targets Democratic lawmakers and delegates ahead of the Democratic National Committee in August to call on Biden to step down. And it includes a pledge for signers to say they will unite behind a new ticket and do everything in their power to beat Trump.

The group’s organizers include Rhode Island state Sen. Tiara Mack (D), former Rhode Island state Rep. Aaron Regunberg (D) and organizers in swing states including Pennsylvania and Michigan.

“We have incredible talent in our party — including a vice president who made history once and could do it again, and governors who’ve proven their ability to win critical swing states,” the group says on its website. “In 2020 Joe Biden committed to being a ‘transition’ president. It is time for him to make good on that commitment, put his country first, and secure his legacy as the man who saved our democracy.”

Five sitting House Democrats have now called for Biden to drop out: Reps. Angie Craig (Minn.), Lloyd Doggett (Texas), Mike Quigley (Ill.), Raúl Grijalva (Ariz.) and Seth Moulton (Mass.), and a number of senior House Democrats reportedly said Biden should drop out on a private call over the weekend.

The website includes quotes from those lawmakers, as well as other notable Democrats such as longtime strategist James Carville, saying Biden should step aside.

The group pointed to a radio interview Biden did last week, for which the host has since admitted she used questions the Biden campaign provided in advance. The host is no longer with the station that aired the interview.

“Democratic leadership asked President Biden to take what should be a simple test for a presidential nominee: Do some unscripted interviews. But Biden’s campaign appaently didn’t trust the President to pass that test, so they essentially cheated on the exam by making the interviews scripted,” Pass the Torch wrote in a social media post.

Biden has repeatedly declared that he is not stepping down, dismissing calls for him to step aside as the nominee in a Monday morning interview on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” He dared other Democrats to challenge him at the convention and bashed the “big names” and “elites” in the Democratic Party who want him off the ticket.

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