WASHINGTON (NEWSnet/AP) — Lawmakers are returning to Washington after their July 4 holiday break as President Joe Biden’s re-election campaign faces pivotal decisions.

While the national Democratic convention does not take place until mid-August; the party had already decided to hold a virtual roll call of nominations before Ohio’s ballot filing deadline. The roll call date has not yet been announced.

After the party primary races were over, Biden participated in a campaign debate June 27 with Republican Donald Trump that was clearly not a good night for the incumbent president.

Biden’s prime-time ABC interview on Friday appeared to do little to calm worried Democrats, and some said made the situation worse.

Given the reactions, nationally-known leaders and lawmakers have to decide whether to work to replace the party leader with merely weeks to go before the first general election ballots are cast – or consider him as the best option to beat Trump.

There appear to be no easy answers in sight; and furthermore, the matter has been staying in the political headlines as Biden prepares to host the NATO summit and 75th anniversary events this week in Washington.

House Democratic leader Hakeem Jeffries is convening lawmakers for private meetings before he shows his own preference, according to a person familiar with the situation and granted anonymity to discuss it.

But a private call Sunday of some 15 top House committee members exposed the deepening divide as at least four more Democrats — Rep. Jerrold Nadler of New York, Rep. Jim Himes of Connecticut, Rep. Adam Smith of Washington state and Rep. Mark Takano of California — privately said Biden should step aside.

Still other members, including Rep. Maxine Waters of California and Rep. Bobby Scott of Virginia, both leaders in the Congressional Black Caucus, spoke forcefully in support of Biden, as did Rep. Richard Neal of Massachusetts, the top Democrat on the powerful Ways and Means Committee.

Speaker Emerita Nancy Pelosi stepped forward to publicly praise Biden on social media as a “great President who continues to deliver for America’s kitchen table.” She added, “and we’re not done yet!”

House Democrats have had some of their better fundraising days so far this election cycle, including a $3 million haul last Friday night after the debate at an event with former President Barack Obama and Jeffries in New York City.

That’s on top of $1.3 million that rolled into the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee during the debate and its immediate aftermath.

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