Democrats Conduct Teleconference to Reassure Donors Post-Debate

Members of the Biden reelection campaign held a conference call with donors last Monday in hopes of easing worries about the president’s disastrous debate performance in Atlanta on June 27. However, some of the donors said the conference call did little to address their concerns.

During the call, senior campaign staff admitted that the president’s debate performance failed to improve his chances against Republican challenger Donald Trump but insisted that those who watched the debate came away with even greater concerns about the GOP nominee.

Campaign pollster Molly Murphy told the donors that the polls reflected the president’s “bad performance” but insisted that the campaign was paying attention to the polling to better understand what it meant for voters.

Biden campaign chair Jennifer O’Malley Dillon called attention to the president’s February physical in which the doctor declared that Biden was “fit for duty.” She claimed that Biden was “probably in better health than most of us.”

O’Malley Dillon also pointed out that former President Barack Obama also had a bad first debate against Republican challenger Mitt Romney in 2012.

However, one anonymous donor told NBC News that the campaign’s assurances weren’t convincing. The donor planned to shift future contributions to the “get-out-the-vote” efforts of outside groups.

Another prominent donor told The Hill that nobody felt good about the debate, adding that some people had “thrown their hearts and souls” into Biden’s reelection and “it could very well go south.”

While the president did not attend the July 1 conference call, he did meet with a group of Democrat governors last Wednesday evening at the White House to try to tamp down concerns and shore up support for his reelection.

Those who attended in person included New York Governor Kathy Hochul, Illinois Governor JB Pritzker, California Governor Gavin Newsom, Maryland Governor Wes Moore, and Democrat Governor’s Association Chair Tim Walz of Minnesota. Several Democrat governors attended the meeting virtually.

Following last Wednesday’s meeting, Governor Walz told reporters that Biden was “fit for office” and insisted that the poor debate would have little impact on the campaign.