Biden's team warily welcomes Trump's run

Donald Trump's decision to jump into the 2024 race could help give Joe Biden a second term in the White House, the Democratic president and his aides believe.

They view his Republican predecessor as a vulnerable and defeated politician, even as they fret about the impact a bitter campaign could have on America.

Several Biden aides and advisers, speaking on condition of anonymity, gave their assessment of how the president and his team view Trump's entry into the race. Trump made his announcement on Tuesday night as he sought to get a jump on potential rivals for the Republican nomination.

Biden, who defeated Trump in the contentious 2020 election, thus far is remaining mum publicly. When he and French President Emmanuel Macron were asked by reporters at the G20 meeting in Bali if they had a reaction to Trump's announcement, they looked at each other briefly and shared a faint smile.

"Not really," Biden said, before turning his attention back to the mangrove trees he and other world leaders were planting.

His aides described Trump as a vulnerable and defeated figure who motivates Democratic voters to go to the polls and reminds centrists of the chaos and turmoil that surrounded his presidency.

They also portrayed Trump as a threat to US democracy through his continued false assertion that the 2020 election was stolen from him through widespread voting fraud - a claim that motivated the January 6, 2021, attack on the US Capitol by his supporters.

"Trump is definitely the most vulnerable of the candidates but he does come with a cost the White House is keenly aware of," said a top Democrat who works with the White House on political issues, speaking on condition of anonymity.

It is important not to underestimate Trump or his influence on Republican leaders, another Biden adviser said, noting that Trump has been written off many times in the past by pundits only to re-emerge stronger.

Biden, who is already the oldest US president and turns 80 on Sunday, has not formally announced whether he will seek re-election. Trump is 76.

Most Americans would like 75 as the cut-off age for running for president, according to Reuters/Ipsos polling.

Both Biden and Trump appear to relish the prospect of a rematch.

When asked in March about his feelings of a possible second run against Trump, Biden said: "In the next election, I'd be very fortunate if I had that same man running against me."

Biden defeated Trump by more than seven million in the nationwide popular vote tally and by a margin of 306 to 232 in the state-by-state Electoral College that determines the outcome of presidential elections.

Trumps advisers appeared similarly enthused: "We are pretty giddy about Biden running," a Trump adviser told Reuters.