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Vermont Sen. Peter Welch calls on Biden to withdraw from presidential race

A man wearing a suit sits at a table behind a microphone
J. Scott Applewhite
Associated Press
Sen. Peter Welch, D-Vt., guides a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on nominees for the federal bench at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, June 20, 2024.

Peter Welch has become the first Democratic U.S. senator to call for President Joe Biden to withdraw from the presidential race.

In an op-ed published Wednesday night in the Washington Post, Welch said, "We cannot unsee President Biden’s disastrous debate performance. We cannot ignore or dismiss the valid questions raised since that night."

Vermont's junior senator said that polling in swing states since the presidential debate shows that Democrats are in "political peril."

Welch wrote that "regular Vermonters are worried" that Biden can't win again.

Biden carried Vermont by more than 35 percentage points in the 2020 election.

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Mark Davis has spent more than a decade working as a reporter in Vermont, focusing on both daily and long-form stories. Prior joining Vermont Public as assistant news director, he worked for five years at Seven Days, the alt-weekly in Burlington, where he won national awards for his criminal justice reporting. Before that, he spent nine years at the Valley News, where won state and national awards for his coverage of the criminal justice system, Topical Storm Irene, and other topics. He has also served as a producer and editor for the Rumblestrip podcast. He graduated from the University of Maryland's Philip Merrill College of Journalism.