CNN host Fareed Zakaria offered President Biden some major praise during an interview on Sunday and said that people have been “impressed” by him and that they believe he’s been a “great president.”
Zakaria brought up the president’s age at the end of his interview, and asked supporters who want him to “step aside.”
“Finally, Mr. President, you’ve often said when people ask you about your age, just watch me. And I think a lot of people do watch you and are impressed and they think you’ve been a great president. You’ve brought the economy back, you’ve restored relations with the world. But many of these people do say and these are hardened supporters of yours, the next thing he should do is step aside and let another generation of Democrats take the baton. Why are they wrong?” he asked.
Biden said they weren’t necessarily right or wrong but that the U.S. was at an “inflection point.”
“Look, to use the phrase again, I think we’re at an inflection point. I think the world is changing and I think there is one thing that comes with age, if you’re being honest about it your whole life and that is some wisdom. I think we’re on the cusp of being able to make significant positive changes in the world. Really honest to God do. You’ve seen what we’ve done in Europe. They are more united since the end of World War II,” he said.
“And you’ve seen what we’ve done in the Indian Ocean and the South China Sea and we’ve united that part of the world, including the 50 island nations that are participating,” Biden continued. “I think we’re putting the world together in a way that is going to make things significantly — how could I say it — more secure for people. We’re uniting democracies, have the possibility of uniting democracies in a way that hadn’t happened ever.”
“And, so, I think that whether it is the far east, whether it is NATO, whether it is Europe, whether it is what is going on in Africa, I think we have enormous opportunities and I think I just want to finish the job. And I think we could do that in the next six years,” Biden said.
An NBC News poll from April found that 70% of Americans, including 51% of Democrats, do not think Biden should run for re-election.
The president sat for an interview with MSNBC’s Nicole Wallace at the end of June, after the Supreme Court ruled against affirmative action.
Biden also told CNN that Russia’s war with Ukraine must end before Ukraine can join NATO.
“I don’t think there is unanimity in NATO about whether or not to bring Ukraine into the NATO family now, at this moment, in the middle of a war,” Biden said. “For example, if you did that, then, you know – and I mean what I say – we’re determined to commit every inch of territory that is NATO territory. It’s a commitment that we’ve all made no matter what. If the war is going on, then we’re all in war. We’re at war with Russia, if that were the case.”
Zakaria wrote in 2021 that he was “puzzled” by Biden’s unpopularity in a column for the Washington Post.
“I find President Biden’s unpopularity puzzling. He is rounding out his first year in the White House with the lowest end of first-year approval ratings of any elected president in modern times with the exception of Donald Trump. Why?” Zakaria wrote.
“Presidents often get rewarded for being around in good times, whether they caused them or not. In Joe Biden’s case, he has mostly handled his job with intelligence and decency. But he is paying the price for the complicated times that we are living through,” he added.