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WASHINGTON, D.C. (LifeSiteNews) – White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre stressed this week that President Joe Biden plans to run for re-election in 2024 despite persistent questions about the Democrat standard-bearer’s age and mental fortitude.

“To be clear, as the President has said repeatedly, he plans to run in 2024,” Jean-Pierre said.

The 79-year-old Biden, who entered office as the oldest American to ever become commander-in-chief, said in March it was his “expectation” to run again, Breitbart reports, but many observers aren’t so sure.

Biden has been famously gaffe-prone throughout his decades in politics, but in recent years the increasing frequency of odd and incoherent statements from the former senator and vice president, as well as moments in which he has appeared lost and confused, sparked a marked increase in speculation from friends and foes alike as to whether his mind has deteriorated with old age, so much so that during the 2020 campaign, Biden pledged only to serve one term “if anything changed in my health” to render him mentally incapable of the job.

In February, Trump-era White House physician Ronny Jackson, who is now a Republican U.S. House member from Texas, sent Biden a letter urging him to “under[go] a cognitive test as soon as possible and immediately mak[e] the results available for the American people,” citing several public instances in which Jackson argued Biden exhibited signs of mental decline.

Last month, a Harvard-Harris poll found that 53% of registered voters “have doubts” when asked if they believe Biden is “mentally fit to serve as President,” and 62% say he is “showing he is too old” for the job, including majorities of independents. Even 19% of Democrats admit “doubts about his fitness,” and 29% of Democrats agree he’s “showing he is too old.”

Biden does not run, whether or not the 2024 nomination would go to Vice President Kamala Harris, who faces her own tensions and doubts among her fellow Democrats, remains an open question.