Discontent and concern among members of his party and unpopularity among voters. Under these two mantles, Joe Biden faces the challenge of re-election as president of the United States, who started his campaign for November this Friday in an emblematic place of the American Civil War, Valley Forge, in Pennsylvania.

“Donald Trump’s campaign is about him, not America,” Biden said in his impassioned speech. “His campaign is obsessed with the past, not the future. He is willing to sacrifice our democracy to come to power.”

In his first campaign ad released this Thursday he made it clear where the shots will go. “Something dangerous is happening in the United States. There is an extremist movement that does not share the basic beliefs of our democracy. All of us are being asked right now what we are going to do to maintain our democracy,” Biden said, warning that the future of democracy is at stake.

He knows that in front of him he will have a rival who does not want to back down even one bit in his speech despite the four criminal trials he has ahead of him, with 91 charges in total. In fact, Trump seems to have gone one step further in his goal of repeating his term in the White House. He seems more defiant than ever. At a rally a few weeks ago he did not hesitate to indicate that immigrants are “polluting the blood of the country” and promised more deportations than ever in the history of the country. The record, by the way, is held by a Democrat, former President Barack Obama.

And far from lowering his tone in the face of what happened on January 6, he has insisted at least a dozen times that he will study a presidential pardon for some of the members of the mob that assaulted the Capitol three years ago if he returns to occupy the Office. Oval. He has called them patriots and innocent people who simply did nothing wrong that day. “We will look very, very seriously at full pardons,” the former president said in an interview in 2022. “I mean full pardons with an apology for many.”

But the problem for Biden is not so much Trump but himself. His loss of credibility in the last three years is evident, according to the polls. His popularity was near a low in December, according to Reuters and Ipsos data, with 53% of Americans disapproving of his performance. They are mainly concerned about the progress of the economy, a heavy burden for Biden after a year of difficult digestion due to inflationary pressures.

Age and the permanent feeling of fragility conveyed by his slow walk and constant lapses do not help him either. Four more years in the White House seem like an excessive burden for a candidate who is already the oldest president to take office and who would end his second term at 86 years old.

The surveys, in this regard, do not cast any doubt either. 73% of voters are seriously concerned that Biden’s age is a serious impediment to her holding office, according to the CNN poll, and 68% find it difficult for her to connect with the younger electorate.

More worrying is the 70% of Americans in key states who do not see the current president as physically fit to continue, a factor that Republican candidates have taken advantage of. Nikki Haley, second in the Republican primary polls, has called for mental competency tests for positions over the age of 75 and Ron DeSantis, the governor of Florida, has pointed out that “the presidency is not a position for someone over 80” .

Within the Democratic Party they are aware of the situation and do not hide their nervousness. “I’m very concerned,” Savannah Mayor Van Johnson said a month ago. He sees a lot of passivity in the Biden campaign and perceives much more movement on the opposing side. “I don’t see any passion, no emotion, nothing,” he added. “It may be a case of too little too late.”

Biden’s stance of unconditional support for Israel could also represent an obstacle to his re-election options. The US veto of a ceasefire in Gaza in the UN Security Council has not sat well with the most left wing of the party, condemning Israel’s excessive response to the October 7 attacks and the lack of intervention by the Washington government to stop the humanitarian catastrophe in the region.

It does not seem like the ideal scenario to defeat Trumpism – if it prevails in the Republican primaries – but the Biden campaign is convinced that the fear of four more years of Trump’s incendiary rhetoric and his challenge to the Constitution It will be enough incentive to go to the polls and vote for the Democrat. The other trick is the Republican’s fate in the courts and the impact that this may have on his chances of moving forward in the presidential race. There will be no shortage of incentives for this alleged electoral revenge between two old heavyweights.