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If Biden messes up debate it's 'game over,' former Obama adviser warns

Former Obama adviser Van Jones said the upcoming debate showdown between President Biden and former President Trump could decide the 2024 election.

Former Obama adviser and CNN commentator Van Jones said President Biden's chances of winning re-election could be over if he "messes up" the upcoming debate with former President Trump.

"This is the entire election, as far as I’m concerned. The entire world will be watching," Jones told CNN host Jim Acosta on Thursday. "If you are a carbon-based life form, you’re going to be watching. If you’ve got a functioning brain stem, you’re going to be watching." 

"Because if Biden goes out there and messes up, it’s game over. If he walks out there and a week later he’s lower in the polls, it’s panic in the party," he continued. "But if he goes in there and he can handle himself against Donald Trump — a runaway train, a locomotive, a raging bull — then this guy deserves another shot to be president, because that is tough."

CNN'S JAKE TAPPER, WHO CALLED TRUMP'S PRESIDENCY A ‘NIGHTMARE,’ TAPPED TO MODERATE PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE

Acosta wondered if Biden could rebuff GOP attacks questioning his mental acuity if he came out and delivered a strong performance on June 27. 

His second guest, legal analyst and former Trump White House counsel Jim Schulz, said one debate wouldn't "make a difference" in eliminating concerns voters have about Biden's age and mental fitness.

"There‘s just too much out there in terms of social media, television, any of the videos, everything that‘s been captured of him walking off-stage, lost. That‘s in people‘s minds and they‘re worried about it," Schulz said. "I don't think there's any turning back on that."

JAMES CARVILLE SAYS HE'D BET TRUMP WON'T SHOW UP TO FIRST DEBATE: ‘I WOULDN’T BE SHOCKED'

Videos of Biden at high-profile events being led off-stage have sparked renewed concerns and questions about the president's cognitive state. However, Jones agreed with Acosta's premise that talk characterizing the president as feeble could work to his advantage in the debate.

"I do think it‘s to Biden‘s advantage because they keep acting like he‘s going to walk out there and fall asleep or fall over so just the fact that he‘s not going to do that. He is sharp on policy," he said.

The first debate will be hosted by CNN and moderated by anchors Jake Tapper and Dana Bash, who have both been critical of Trump.

The two candidates' campaigns both agreed to have their microphones muted when it was not their turn to talk during the 90-minute debate.

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