Vice President Joe Biden visited with the head of the AFL-CIO on Thursday, another in a series of moves that has heightened scrutiny about whether he'll seek the Democratic presidential nomination.
While Biden has held several meetings in recent weeks with strategists and politicians, those meetings, aides say, have been primarily driven by his responding to potential support.
As reported in The Times on Thursday, Biden is in no rush to make a decision and could delay an announcement until after the first Democratic presidential debate in October or even next year's early nominating contests in Iowa and New Hampshire.
Still, his meeting with AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka arrived as each of the current Democratic presidential candidates courts support from labor, a major constituency for the party.
Hillary Rodham Clinton, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley all met last month in Washington with leaders of the AFL-CIO, offering pitches to try to secure future endorsements.
Clinton captured the support of the American Federation of Teachers this summer. And earlier this month, National Nurses United, a union made up mostly of women, offered its support to Sanders.
In a speech this summer, Trumka said Democratic candidates must embrace blue-collar workers.
"Standing with working people once in awhile won't work. Candidates can't hedge bets any longer," he said in what some viewed as a veiled jab toward Clinton.
Moreover, controversy surrounding Clinton's use of a private email server while secretary of State has led some Democrats to pause and rethink whether there might be a better alternative as the party looks toward what will be a contentious 2016 general election.
When asked Thursday about Biden's potential candidacy, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, a former chief of staff to President Obama, said the vice president will need the "emotional energy."
"Running for office is one thing. You have to also have the energy for that process, and I can say that personally. And you also have to have the energy for the job," he told the Chicago Tribune. "And I think the vice president, obviously, in his comments, is acknowledging the kind of process you go through as you evaluate this."