“A lot of us feel that if Trump runs, there’s no one else that could beat Trump than Joe Biden.” – Biden pollster John Anzalone to Politico
A New York Magazine report released Tuesday reveals Democratic insiders are bitterly split about whether President Biden will be capable of running in 2024, let alone winning.
While some insiders are concerned about Biden’s advancing age and plummeting polling numbers, others do not believe anyone except for Biden stands a chance of beating former President Trump if he runs in 2024. It is abundantly clear that for Democratic party insiders and Biden’s inner circle, the fear of a Trump re-run looms front and center in their strategy for 2024.
One of Biden’s pollsters John Anzalone told Politico, “A lot of us feel that if Trump runs, there’s no one else that could beat Trump than Joe Biden. Yet Anzalone himself contributed to polling showing less than a third of Americans think Biden will run again in 2024 and even among Democrats less than half think he will run.
The preoccupation with whether Trump runs in 2024 and the sentiment that despite his flaws Biden would be the best candidate to block a Trump victory were echoed by other Democratic insiders throughout the report.
According to the report, a former Biden aid said that “if it’s Trump, Democrats will circle the wagons”, while a Biden veteran advisor said, “If Trump is alive, Biden is running.”
“If it’s Trump, Democrats will circle the wagons.” – Former Biden aid
This infighting comes at a time when President Biden’s polling numbers are in freefall. The President’s approval rating has fallen to just 36% according to a May 25th Reuters-Ipsos poll, the lowest on record in that poll.
The pollsters note Biden’s approval rating is down 6 percentage points over the past week, and even among Democrats Biden’s approval rating fell from 76% last week to 72% this week.
As Market Research Foundation recently noted, Biden is continuing to lose support with younger Americans and Latinos at an alarming rate.
A recent NPR/Marist poll found Biden’s approval rating fell 16 points among Gen Z and millennials in the past year, from 53% to just 37%. Gen Z and millennials view Biden unfavorably by a margin of 57% to 36%, while Trump’s favorable rating sits four points higher than Biden’s at 40%.
Gen Z and millennials view Biden unfavorably by a margin of 57% to 36%.
Harvard’s Institute of Politics found Biden’s approval rating with Gen Z fell 18 points in the past year, from 59% to 41%. Gallup found the steepest decline, showing President Biden’s approval rating plummeted 21-points with young people from 60% to just 39%.
The NPR/Marist poll found Gen Z and millennials say 42% to 16% the GOP is better positioned than the Democratic Party to deal with national security issues.
Young Americans also say the GOP is better positioned to handle the economy by an almost two to one margin (21% to 39%) and young people disapprove of Biden’s handling of the economy 58% to 31%.
A March poll conducted by Democratic pollster and professor Eduardo Gamarra shows Trump leads Biden for the 2024 presidential race among Hispanics.
Hispanics prefer Trump over Biden in 2024 20.4% to 18.3%.
When asked who they would vote for if the 2024 election were held today, the largest share of Hispanics (20.4%) chose Trump. Former First Lady Michelle Obama came in second with 18.7% of the vote, and Biden came in third, with 18.3% of the vote.
Even more notable is the diversity of those who say they would support Trump in 2024. Although unsurprisingly, the largest share of Latinos who say they would support Trump in 2024 identify as Republican (53.8%), almost a fifth of Trump’s support stems from Independent Latinos (18.2%) and over 5% of Latino Democrats say they would support Trump as well. Twenty-five percent of Hispanics who identify as Greens also support Trump, but the sample size is relatively small.
President Biden’s dropping approval ratings are a problem for Democrats in the midterms, but they complicate the 2024 field much more. Democrats are aware of Biden’s flaws as a candidate, but whether rational or not, many fear Biden is the only candidate who could hold back a Trump victory.