Democrats’ leaders in Congress are not urging them to rally around Biden.

Democratic leaders in the House and Senate refrained on Wednesday from urging their members to rally around President Biden and were instead listening to a barrage of complaints streaming in both from the party’s centrist wing and its progressives.

The private message from congressional leaders was that members should feel free to take whatever position about Mr. Biden’s candidacy was best for their districts, according to several people involved in the conversations who insisted on anonymity to discuss them.

For some, that meant joining the trickle of elected Democrats who have blasted the president’s performance and either called on him to withdraw or suggested he should seriously consider it.

“I believe the president’s delivery at the debate was a disaster,” Representative Don Davis, a North Carolina Democrat in a competitive district, said in a statement on Tuesday. “Americans want a leader who is committed to telling the truth, but are also seeking a fighter.”

“President Biden needs to show that he is fit to lead the free world and demonstrate his fighting spirit,” Mr. Davis added. “If he’s going to stay in, he needs to step up.”

Several Democrats from swing districts were awaiting the results of polls in their districts to decide whether they would join the calls for Mr. Biden to step aside. Members of Mr. Biden’s team — including Steve Ricchetti and Shuwanza Goff — were working the phones with lawmakers, trying to tamp down on the growing discontent.

But as congressional leaders called around to Democrats from battleground districts, they heard dire warnings, according to the people involved in the conversations. Some suggested there was no way Mr. Biden could defeat Mr. Trump. Others said Mr. Biden would drag House Democrats down. Still others urged Democrats to rally around Vice President Kamala Harris.

The dilemma for Democrats was illustrated by the actions of Senator Joe Manchin III of West Virginia, a longtime Democrat who recently abandoned the party to declare himself an independent. Mr. Manchin was so disillusioned by Mr. Biden’s debate performance last week — and angry that his phone calls to top Democrats to vent his alarm went unreturned — that he asked his staff to book him on several Sunday news talk shows to rail against the state of Mr. Biden’s campaign.

Eventually, Senator Chris Coons, Democrat of Delaware and a longtime ally of Mr. Biden, and other Democrats intervened with Mr. Manchin, who canceled the planned television appearances. The Washington Post reported earlier on Mr. Manchin’s change of plans.

Other lawmakers who have expressed openness to replacing Mr. Biden have also received calls from the campaign asking for more time to right to the ship.

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