Laura Barron-Lopez:

Well, it’s not good for Democrats right now, Geoff.

Most Democrats that I spoke to said that they’re worried. And lawmakers, party operatives as well as Democratic Party leaders spoke — that I spoke to, that you spoke to told us panic is an understatement. They said things like: “The guy that we’re nominating is just not capable of getting elected any longer.”

Some also said: “It’s going to require a ton of work to come back from this.”

But then there were other Democrats, big leaders in the party, like former President Barack Obama, who posted on X: “Bad debate nights happen. Trust me, I know, but this election is still a choice between someone who has fought for ordinary folks his entire life and someone who only cares about himself.” Obama ultimately saying that last night didn’t change that.

But to put this panic in context, Geoff, I have never heard this level of panic before from Democrats across the board on and off the Hill about whether or not they think President Biden can win in November. But no one is saying this on the record, Geoff. No one is saying that they conceivably think that they can replace President Biden on the ticket.

And other major party leaders, like Majority Leader in the House Hakeem Jeffries, as well as Representative Jim Clyburn, are sticking by President Biden.

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