Axelrod: Obama doesn’t want Trump-Biden race to be ‘tag-team match’

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Axelrod: Obama doesn’t want Trump-Biden race to be ‘tag-team match’

David Axelrod said his old boss, former President Obama, does not want the 2024 presidential race to be a “tag-team match.”

“It isn’t that customary for former presidents to be out there, actively campaigning, and Obama has done that because these are extraordinary times,” Axelrod said Thursday in an appearance on CNN’s “Laura Coates Live.”

“But if you watch what he’s done, he tends to get engaged in the fall when voters are engaged, and he tends to pick his spots because I don’t think he wants to be — he doesn’t want it to be a tag-team match.”

President Biden held a multimillion-dollar fundraiser with Obama and former President Clinton on Thursday night in New York City. All three also joined the “SmartLess” podcast hosted by actors Jason Bateman, Sean Hayes and Will Arnett; the episode will be released at a later date, according to the White House.

“You and I are paying rapt attention to this race, now,” Axelrod told Coates. “Most Americans are not. And they’re gonna start paying attention after the conventions, in the fall. That’s when the final arguments are gonna be made that are gonna turn this race.”

It’s in that fall time frame, Axelrod said, that “you’ll see President Obama out there, just as he was in 2020, just as he was in 2022.”

Obama campaigned for his former vice president back in 2020, saying at a drive-in rally in Michigan at the time that then-President Trump hadn’t “shown any interest in doing the work or helping anybody but himself or his friends or treating the presidency as anything more than a reality show to give him the attention that he craves.”

“But unfortunately, the rest of us have to live with the consequences,” Obama continued.