Jill Biden says she’s ‘all in’ on husband’s reelection as he insists anew he won’t leave the race

Jul 8, 2024, 2:50 AM

First lady Jill Biden speaks during an event at The American Legion Post 111 as she campaigns for h...

First lady Jill Biden speaks during an event at The American Legion Post 111 as she campaigns for her husband, President Joe Biden, on Monday, July 8, 2024, in Seminole Heights, Fla. (Dylan Townsend/Tampa Bay Times via AP)

(Dylan Townsend/Tampa Bay Times via AP)

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Jill Biden on Monday declared herself “all in” on President Joe Biden’s bid to remain as the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, despite calls by some Democrats for him to drop out after his damaging debate performance against Donald Trump shook their confidence in him.

The president himself has brushed aside those calls and insisted anew on Monday that he isn’t leaving the race.

“For all the talk out there about this race, Joe has made it clear that he’s all in,” the first lady told a military crowd in Wilmington, North Carolina, the first of three battleground states she was visiting.

“That’s the decision that he’s made, and just as he has always supported my career, I am all in too,” said Jill Biden, who teaches English and writing as a community college professor.

Later Monday, in remarks at an American Legion post in Tampa, Florida, she said her husband considers support of the military and veterans a “sacred obligation” that she contended contrasts with Trump.

“As commander in chief, President Biden wakes up every morning ready to work for you,” Jill Biden said. “Donald Trump wakes up every morning thinking of one person and one person only: himself.”

Danny Fuqua, president of the Democratic Veterans Caucus of Florida, said Biden’s ties to the military make him the clear choice in November.

“The Bidens are a military family. They are one of us. They not only see the uniform, they see the person in it,” Fuqua said.

Jill Biden was headed next to an event in Columbus, Georgia, home of the Army’s sprawling Fort Moore.

Her daylong tour was part of the Biden campaign’s broader effort to rebound from the president’s halting performance against Trump in last month’s debate.

The debate led some congressional Democrats and others to call on him to let another candidate challenge Trump because they no longer believe the 81-year-old president is mentally and physically capable of defeating the former Republican president in November.

Jill Biden also announced the formation of an organizing group, Veterans and Military Families for Biden-Harris at her Tampa stop.

“We can’t take anything for granted. We have to meet this moment because our freedoms are at risk,” she said.

The president has insisted since the June 27 debate that he is staying in the race. He did so again on Monday in a letter to congressional Democrats and during an on-air telephone interview with MSNBC.

Jill Biden used her appearance to draw contrasts between her husband’s and Trump’s attitudes toward U.S. service members, veterans and their families.

The president’s late son Beau served in Iraq as a member of the Delaware Army National Guard, and the first lady’s father was a Navy signalman during World War II.

“This is personal to us,” she said, describing the waits to connect by phone with a service member stationed overseas or having to smile through a loved one’s absence on holidays.

“Let me ask you this … Does Donald Trump know what it’s like?” she said.

The first lady mentioned reports that Trump, during a 2018 trip to France, referred to service members who paid the ultimate sacrifice as “suckers” and “losers.” Trump denies making the comments.

“It’s disgraceful, but it’s not surprising,” she said. And, noting that the Supreme Court has said presidents are immune from prosecution for acts committed while in office, the first lady said “our democracy cannot withstand a Trump president with virtually no limits.”

“Members of our military honor their oath to support and defend the Constitution. We cannot trust Donald Trump to do the same,” she said. “You deserve a commander in chief who serves with integrity and wisdom and character, and that’s my husband, Joe Biden.”

A spokesperson for Trump’s campaign did not immediately respond to an emailed request for comment.

During the debate, Biden and Trump argued over who cares the most about veterans. Biden noted that he recently visited an American military cemetery in France, the final resting place for U.S. soldiers who fought in World War I, which Trump notably skipped on his 2018 trip.

Trump asserted during the debate that the Democratic president is coddling migrants while neglecting the needs of veterans and service members, and he faulted Biden for the chaotic withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan.


Superville reported from Washington.


Follow the AP’s coverage of the 2024 election at

National News

Associated Press

2024 Election Latest: Republicans shift their gaze to national security as RNC enters third day

The third day of the Republican National Convention kicks off Wednesday with Republicans — led by the newly nominated Donald Trump and his running mate, U.S. Sen. JD Vance of Ohio — shifting their focus to issues of national security and foreign policy. Republicans are expected to focus on Democratic President Joe Biden’s handling of […]

56 minutes ago

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas., speaks during the Republican National Convention Tuesday, July 16, 2024, i...

Associated Press

FACT FOCUS: A look at ominous claims around illegal immigration made at the Republican convention

After Donald Trump triumphantly entered the hall on the second night of the Republican National Convention in Milwaukee, the program turned to one of his signature issues: illegal immigration. An ominous video of chaos at the U.S.-Mexico border led into to a speech by U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, who declared, “We are facing […]

1 hour ago

Former Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs poses in Los Angeles, Monday, July 15, 2024. Tubbs says he is r...

Associated Press

Former mayor known for guaranteed income programs launches bid for California lieutenant governor

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Michael Tubbs is running for lieutenant governor of California, returning to politics four years after voters in his Central Valley hometown ousted him as one of the country’s youngest mayors following his reboot of guaranteed income programs for the poor that made him a star. The 2026 campaign, announced Wednesday, offers […]

3 hours ago

FILE - A logging truck drives on the Interstate 5 bridge that spans the Columbia River and connects...

Associated Press

Aging bridges in 16 states will be improved or replaced with the help of $5B in federal funding

Dozens of aging bridges in 16 states will be replaced or improved with the help of $5 billion in federal grants announced Wednesday by President Joe Biden’s administration, the latest beneficiaries of a massive infrastructure law. The projects range from coast to coast, with the largest providing an additional $1.4 billion to help replace two […]

3 hours ago

President Joe Biden speaks at a 2024 Prosperity Summit Tuesday, July 16, 2024, in North Las Vegas, ...

Associated Press

Biden aims to cut through voter disenchantment as he courts Latino voters at Las Vegas conference

LAS VEGAS (AP) — President Joe Biden is trying to shore up support among disenchanted voters key to his reelection chances as he meets Wednesday with members of a Latino civil rights organization in the battleground state of Nevada. Biden is set to deliver an address to the UnidosUS annual conference in Las Vegas, where […]

4 hours ago

Associated Press

Stock market today: World stocks slip on report US might tighten technology curbs on China

Global stocks fell Wednesday as technology shares sank after a report said the U.S. plans tighter import controls on companies that share chip-making technology with China. London’s FTSE 100 edged 0.1% higher to 8,169.24 as data showed the inflation rate remained steady at the Bank of England’s 2% target in June. That hit hopes for […]

4 hours ago

Jill Biden says she’s ‘all in’ on husband’s reelection as he insists anew he won’t leave the race