San Francisco mayor says Biden should stay in the race

With anxieties about President Joe Biden’s candidacy riding high, San Francisco Mayor London Breed said in an interview Wednesday that—in contrast to some leading Democrats—she wholeheartedly supports the president remaining on the ticket. 

“He’s still very fired up and ready to take on Donald Trump,” Breed told The Standard. “We need someone in the office who cares about taking care of the entire United States of America, so we’ve got to understand what’s at stake here.”

Breed acknowledged that Biden’s debate performance last month wasn’t his best moment, but said she remains confident in his leadership.

“He had one rough night, [but that] doesn’t mean he doesn’t know what to do and how to do it,” Breed said. “And he knows what to do and how to do it. And he’s doing it.”

Along with other Democratic mayors, Breed met with Biden virtually on Tuesday to address the issues like housing, childcare and rising living costs in the country, she said, and Biden “was in a very talkative mood” on the call.

Since Biden’s shaky performance at the debate, attention has turned to Vice President Kamala Harris, a former San Francisco district attorney and longtime ally of Breed. Breed has described Harris as a good friend and mentor

Breed said she’s “wholeheartedly supportive of [Harris], too,” but seemed unconvinced about the idea of Harris becoming the presidential nominee.

“She will never disrespect Joe Biden,” Breed said. “She is there to support the president. She’s doing exactly what Biden did for [President Barack] Obama.”

Breed also said San Francisco has benefited tremendously because of the “extraordinary relationship” between her office and the federal government.

In a written statement, the Mayor’s Office pointed to the Biden administration’s accomplishments in passing a landmark infrastructure package and its concerted effort to disrupt the production and trafficking of fentanyl.

“Mayor Breed looks forward to continuing to work with the president and his administration, and our federal partners on local issues important to San Francisco’s future,” the statement said.

Earlier on Wednesday, comments by Speaker Emerita Nancy Pelosi kicked off a fresh wave of speculation about the president’s future on the Democratic ticket. Pelosi said on MSNBC “it’s up to the president to decide if he will run” but stopped short of an unequivocal endorsement of Biden as the party’s nominee. 

“We’re all encouraging him to make that decision because time is running short,” Pelosi said.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, one California Democratic official had a harsher assessment of the president’s chances. 

“I think we need to have the strongest messenger against Trump,” the source said. “I don’t think that’s Joe Biden.”

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