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Some Kansas City voters want Biden to step aside after presidential debate

FILE - President Joe Biden, right, and Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump, left, stand during break in a presidential debate hosted by CNN, Thursday, June 27, 2024, in Atlanta. There were exhaustive, independent fact-checks of claims made during the debate but none available to the millions of people watching the two presidents in real time. (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
John Bazemore
Associated Press
President Joe Biden, right, and Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump, left, stand during break in a presidential debate hosted by CNN, Thursday, June 27, 2024, in Atlanta.

Kansas Citians had much to say after the first presidential debate between President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump. After the face-off between 81-year-old Biden and 78-year-old Trump, some KCUR listeners expressed concern about both candidates' health and integrity.

Analysis following Thursday night's presidential debate suggests the Democrats are in scramble-mode after President Joe Biden stumbled while debating Republican candidate and former president Donald Trump.

"It couldn't have gotten worse for the Democrats," said Bob Beatty, a political scientist at Washburn University.

"This actually was the worst possible scenario in which [Biden] does not do very well, but possibly sticks to his guns, refuses to leave the race, and possibly loses the election because of that," Beatty said.

The presidential candidates were asked about their physical and cognitive health during the debate, with each expressing confidence in their ability to lead the nation. But KCUR listeners expressed concern.

Up To Date caller Jean from Prairie Village, Kansas, said she's been a long-time support of Biden.

"I wanted to share my utter despair at Joe Biden's performance," Jean said. "He should not be on the ticket. Right now, I'm not sure he should be president."

Lack of confidence in Biden and the desire for a new candidate has Travis, an Up To Date caller from Kansas City, questioning if he'll vote.

"We need to gracefully allow Biden to exit the primary race. And let's see if we can find a leader that can float to the top, because right now, anything's better than what we've gotten," Travis said. I'm not sure I'm gonna vote in this next coming election."

While Biden's debate presence appeared weak, analysts say that Trump's showmanship may not have garnered much added support.

"I don't think Trump should really be seen as a winner in a debate where he really, I don't think, convinced anybody who wasn't already in his camp to support it," said political scientist Peverill Squire.

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When I host Up To Date each morning at 9, my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. Reach me at steve@kcur.org or on Twitter @stevekraske.
As a producer for Up To Date, my goal is to inform our audience by curating interesting and important conversations with reliable sources and individuals directly affected by a topic or issue. I strive for our program to be a place that hosts impactful conversations, providing our audience with greater knowledge, intrigue, compassion and entertainment. Contact me at elizabeth@kcur.org or on Twitter at @er_bentley_ruiz.
As an Up To Date producer, I aim to create a space for Kansas Citians to come together for curious and inspired conversations about the region we call home. I want to help find answers to big questions, shine a light on local change makers and break down complex issues people need to know about. Email me at hallejackson@kcur.org.
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