Biden adviser says campaign is looking forward to 'what's next' after tough debate

Anita Dunn, a senior adviser to President Joe Biden, on Saturday said that there was no discussion of the president dropping out of the presidential race following his lackluster performance during the first presidential debate against former President Donald Trump.

“No, the conversation we had is, ‘OK, what do we do next?’” Dunn said during a panel on MSNBC’s “The Weekend,” where she appeared in a personal capacity.

“The president, above all, is focused on, ‘What do we do next? What do I need to go do?’” Dunn said.

She also spoke about the enthusiasm that Biden’s supporters are still showing for his campaign, highlighting that the campaign raised $27 million since the debate.

“The reality is that I think voters experienced this debate a little differently than perhaps some of the insiders did,” Dunn said, adding: “We were looking at a lot of research. Other people were looking at ongoing research as well during it, and voters actually focus on issues that are important to them.”

Her remarks came after Biden’s debate performance on Thursday night stirred worries among Democrats, with some even calling for Biden to step aside and let someone younger run.

On Friday, the editorial board of The New York Times joined those calls, urging Democrats to “create a process to select someone more capable to stand in [Biden’s] place to defeat Mr. Trump in November.”

Dunn also pointed to Biden’s post-debate campaign event in North Carolina on Friday, where the president appeared energized and motivated as he spoke to a crowd that interrupted his speech to drown out protesters with chants of “four more years!”

“I know I’m not a young man. I don’t walk as easy as I used to. I don’t speak as smoothly as I used to,” Biden told the audience on Friday. “I don’t debate as well as I used to, but I know what I do know — I know how to tell the truth!”

Though he coughed multiple times throughout the rally, Biden delivered attacks against Trump, at one point calling the former president a “one-man crime wave.”

Dunn argued that voters and supporters preferred Biden’s focus on the issues at the debate over Trump’s rhetoric and personality.

“[Trump] showed exactly who he was, and this — you know, the bullying, the yelling, the bragging, all of that was on full display during this debate. And I think that the president … came across as someone who is interested in issues,” she added.

“The president’s going to continue to be out there,” Dunn said Saturday, adding, “And he’s going to make his case for why Donald Trump is a threat to this country, and why there is a better path ahead for Americans.”

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