President Joe Biden will celebrate his 80th birthday party on Nov. 20 at the White House in a celebration that is being described as subdued, White House sources told Politico Tuesday.
Biden will become the first president to hold office as an octogenarian, a day that White House aides are reportedly trying to downplay, according to Politico. He was the oldest president ever elected, being 77 on Election Day in 2020 and 78 on inauguration day in 2021, topping his predecessor Donald Trump who was inaugurated at 70.
Biden’s birthday will come 12 days after the midterm elections, where Democrats are expected to lose control of the House, posing major obstacles to Biden’s efforts to enact his agenda ahead of the 2024 presidential election.
Biden’s 80th birthday comes as questions swirl about his mental acuity and ability to seek reelection in 2024, which he has said he plans to do. Republicans have frequently pointed out speech mistakes and moments of forgetfulness as evidence that Biden is incapable of doing his job.
“I think we’re all concerned for President Biden’s mental health,” Republican Sen. Roger Marshall of Kansas, a physician, said recently. Trump has frequently criticized Biden’s mental health and played video compilations of incidents of apparent forgetfulness at his “Save America” rallies, having nicknamed him “Sleepy Joe Biden” during the 2020 campaign.
Biden also faced criticism for apparently thinking that Republican Rep. Jackie Walorski of Indiana was in the audience at a recent event, even though she had died in a car accident on Aug. 3. “Jackie, are you here? Where’s Jackie? She must not be here,” said Biden on Sept. 28, despite releasing a statement on her death the day it occurred.
Biden’s memory continues to decline https://t.co/1lSwOIFy8K
— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) September 28, 2022
“I any lesson emerges from modern history, it is that if a president seems vigorous and well and is doing the job, age has been less of a factor for voters,” said Michael Beschloss, a presidential historian, to Politico. Biden’s approval rating is currently 42%, with a disapproval rating of 56%, per Gallup.
However, Biden allies have pushed back, with Jim Messina, a Democratic consultant, telling Politico that “The average voter doesn’t care about this. The average voter wants to know what Joe Biden is going to do to make their lives better.”
Some Congressional Democrats and candidates, however, have openly called on Biden to not run for reelection in 2024, including Democratic Reps. Tim Ryan of Ohio, the party’s Senate nominee in Ohio, as well as Angela Craig of Minnesota, Dean Phillips of Minnesota and former Rep. Max Rose of New York, who is running for his old seat.
Biden’s 80th birthday will not be his first such party at the White House. He celebrated several birthdays during his eight-year tenure as vice president in the Obama administration.
The White House did not respond to a request for comment from the Daily Caller News Foundation.