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Divided We Stand

Divided We Stand
New book about the 2020 election.

Sunday, November 5, 2023

Bad Poll for Biden

Our most recent book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics. The 2024 race has begun.

Shane Goldmacher at NYT:
President Biden is trailing Donald J. Trump in five of the six most important battleground states one year before the 2024 election, suffering from enormous doubts about his age and deep dissatisfaction over his handling of the economy and a host of other issues, new polls by The New York Times and Siena College have found.

The results show Mr. Biden losing to Mr. Trump, his likeliest Republican rival, by margins of three to 10 percentage points among registered voters in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada and Pennsylvania. Mr. Biden is ahead only in Wisconsin, by two percentage points, the poll found.

Mr. Biden and Mr. Trump are both deeply — and similarly — unpopular, according to the poll. But voters who overwhelmingly said the nation was on the wrong track are taking out their frustrations on the president.


Another ominous sign for Democrats is that voters across all income levels felt that Mr. Biden’s policies had hurt them personally, while they credited Mr. Trump’s policies for helping them. The results were mirror opposites: Voters gave Mr. Trump a 17-point advantage for having helped them and Mr. Biden a 18-point disadvantage for having hurt them.

For Mr. Biden, who turns 81 later this month, being the oldest president in American history stands out as a glaring liability. An overwhelming 71 percent said he was “too old” to be an effective president — an opinion shared across every demographic and geographic group in the poll, including a remarkable 54 percent of Mr. Biden’s own supporters.

In contrast, only 19 percent of supporters of Mr. Trump, who is 77, viewed him as too old, and 39 percent of the electorate overall.

Concerns about the president’s advancing age and mental acuity — 62 percent also said Mr. Biden does not have the “mental sharpness” to be effective — are just the start of a sweeping set of Biden weaknesses in the survey results.

Nate Cohn at NYT:

In a hypothetical race without Mr. Biden, an unnamed generic Democrat leads Mr. Trump by eight points, 48 to 40 — a wider lead than the three-point edge held by an unnamed Democrat at this time in 2019.

How Trump Fared in Times/Siena Polling Against …

4 years ago

Joe Biden

Dem. +2

Rep. +5

A named alternative

Elizabeth Warren in 2019; Kamala Harris in 2023

Rep. +2

Rep. +3

An unnamed, generic Democrat

Dem. +3

Dem. +8

Based on New York Times/Siena College polls of registered voters in battleground states conducted Oct. 22 to Nov. 3 and in October 2019. Numbers are rounded.

Why Biden Is Behind, and How He Could Come Back - The New York Times
Even Kamala Harris — no political juggernaut so far — fares a bit better than Mr. Biden, trailing Mr. Trump by three points in a hypothetical matchup, compared with Mr. Biden’s five- point deficit (Mr. Trump appears to lead by four points in the top-line 48-44 result because of rounding).

While Mr. Biden doesn’t fare all that much worse than his running mate, the top-line similarity obscures major differences in their support: A full 11 percent of Ms. Harris’s would-be supporters do not back Mr. Biden, and two-thirds of them are either nonwhite or younger than 30.

As a result, Mr. Biden would lead by three points among registered voters and two points among likely voters across the battlegrounds, including leads in five of the six states, if he could regain the nonwhite and young voters who would be willing to vote for his own not-especially-popular vice president. His lead among Black, Hispanic and young voters would return to 2020 levels as well, at least among likely voters.