An 81-year-old Joe Biden is running for reelection

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If President Biden’s birthday is like his last, he eats cake quietly with the family and hopes no one else notices. When he turned 80 last fall, the White House arranged a marriage as a distraction for the press. Biden’s granddaughter was married on the South Lawn. The timing was “not a coincidence,” two sources told CNN.

Regardless, voters noticed that Biden was showing his years. Seventy-seven percent of Americans say he is too old for another term, according to an August AP poll, including 69% of Democrats, 74% of independents, and 89% of Republicans. And who says Biden didn’t unite the country? During the 2020 election, concerns about his age were whispered sotto voce, but now they are front and center in his re-election bid.

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Biden turns 81 on November 20. He has struggled on camera and limited his public schedule. His aides fear that he might be pushed—again—from TV. “Biden cannot manage and campaign the way previous incumbents have,” Politico reported this week. “He doesn’t have the capacity to do it, and his staff doesn’t trust him to try anymore.”

Then why did he ask the public to keep him in the Oval Office until 2029, when he will be 86 years old? If he can’t handle the rigors of a presidential campaign, why should voters think he can handle four more years of a grueling job, which may include staying up at night to respond to China’s invasion of Taiwan?

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Given Biden’s age and obvious decline, running for re-election is an act of deep selfishness. He’s wanted the big desk since at least 1987, when he first ran. Older people, even if they aren’t surrounded by yes men, may be the last to notice the passage of time, as many can attest after trying to get dad’s car keys.

Biden wants to run another basement campaign in Wilmington, albeit this time from the White House. But the polls are screaming that his weakness could return Donald Trump to office. Even if Biden wins, there is a strong chance that the country will get President Kamala Harris before her term ends.

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The White House has tried to laugh off such concerns. As press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said: “Eighty is the new 40. Haven’t you heard?”

It won’t work, especially when Biden’s aides are whispering to the press that they don’t trust him on the campaign trail. His staff and family should put the country before the perks of office. If the truth is that the boss is too old for another term, and if he doesn’t hear it, the honorable step is to resign and stop covering for him.