The AP Interview: Biden ready to run, US first lady says
NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — U.S. first lady Jill Biden gave one of the clearest indications yet that President Joe Biden will run for a second term, telling The Associated Press in an exclusive interview on Friday that there's “pretty much” nothing left to do but figure out the time and place for the announcement.
Although Biden has long said that it's his intention to seek reelection, he has yet to make it official, and he's struggled to dispel questions about whether he's too old to continue serving as president. Biden would be 86 at the end of a second term.
“He says he’s not done," the first lady said in Nairobi, the second and final stop of her five-day trip to Africa. "He’s not finished what he’s started. And that’s what’s important.”
She added: “How many times does he have to say it for you to believe it?”
Biden aides have said an announcement is likely to come in April, after the first fundraising quarter ends, which is around the time that President Barack Obama officially launched his reelection campaign.
The first lady has long been described as a key figure in Biden's orbit as he plans his future.
“Because I'm his wife,” she laughed.
But she brushed off the question about whether she has the deciding vote on whether the president runs for reelection.
“Of course he'll listen to me, because we're a married couple," she said. But, she added later, “he makes up his own mind, believe me.”
Associated Press writer Chris Megerian contributed to this report from Washington.
EDITOR'S NOTE — Darlene Superville has covered the White House and first ladies since 2009 and is co-author, with AP Executive Editor Julie Pace, of a 2022 biography of Jill Biden.
Darlene Superville, The Associated Press