A new Gallup poll shows that Joe Biden has a higher favorability rating that Trump has ever had as a candidate or president.
Joe Biden maintains his national strength
Gallup found, “Joe Biden on Saturday will hold a presidential-style rally intended to make his march toward becoming the Democrat to take on President Donald Trump seem inevitable, even as rivals search for ways to slow him down…His image remains largely intact among Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents, though his favorable rating among them has edged down from 80% in February to 74% now. He remains largely unfavorable among Republicans and Republican-leaning independents, with a 32% favorable and 60% unfavorable rating — virtually unchanged from February.”
Donald Trump has never been over 50% approval in any reputable independent poll as a candidate or as president. Biden’s favorable rating with Republicans is what keeps the White House awake at night because he is popular with a particular sub-set of Trump voter who voted for Obama twice but flipped to Trump in 2016.
Biden isn’t slowing down because he has tapped into the intense drive that Democrats have to beat Trump. The hard lesson that Democrats learned in 2016 is that the policy quibbles about how to get universal healthcare and lower the cost of college aren’t as important as winning the general election. Democrats have their priorities straight and until other primary candidates can convince voters that they are the best to beat Trump, Biden likely to continue to lap the field.
Bernie Sanders loses more ground
Sanders is getting increasingly close to Trump levels of favorability. The senator from Vermont is statistically at a net (0) favorable rating, with a split of 46%-45% favorable rating. Sanders is being hurt by lingering weaknesses that remain from his 2016 campaign, the fact that he appears to be running much of the same campaign as 2016, and a larger field with candidates like Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) who is peeling off progressive support that went to Sanders by default in 2016.
The full Gallup chart:
— GallupNews (@GallupNews) May 18, 2019
The support for Warren and Sen. Kamala Harris in the early states is a looming problem for Sanders who isn’t strong enough to catch Biden is close to being passed by Warren or Harris.
Democrats appear not to want a long and bloody primary
One consistency in all the polling is that Democrats are suggesting that their minds are open to other candidates, but no candidate has made a significant move up the polls yet. The size of the field is so large that it is impossible for less known candidates to stand out. There will be some shifting once the field sets, but there are currently only six real contenders for the nomination. Biden, Sanders, Warren, Harris, Buttigieg, and O’Rourke.
Everyone needs to break out, or they will be getting out o the race in early 2020, as so far Democratic voters have shown no interest in a long and bloody primary fight.
Democrats are driven by a passion for getting Donald Trump out of the White House.
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Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association