OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
If Democrats and the Biden administration believed that indicting his chief rival, former President Donald Trump, would damage the 2024 GOP frontrunner’s brand to the point he would become an unviable contender, they were wrong.
Not only has Trump’s polling numbers rocketed since he was hit with four indictments in New York, Washington, D.C., Fulton County, Ga., and southern Florida, but he is also moving past Biden in critical swing states, according to a new survey.
“The states that had the narrowest margin of victory for either candidate last cycle were Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, with Biden winning all but North Carolina. Across those key swing states, Trump is ahead of Biden 41% to 35%, and 24% of voters remain undecided, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll,” The Daily Caller reported.
“Among independent voters, the former president also held a slight advantage over Biden, according to the poll. Trump received 32% support among independents compared to Biden’s 30%, and 38% were undecided. Uncertain voters favored Biden over Trump at 49% to 38%,” The DC noted, citing the survey.
In a hypothetical head-to-head contest for the 2024 election, Biden and Trump are deadlocked at 39%, as per the survey. Many voters cited concerns about the president’s age, along with worries about the economy and crime, as significant factors influencing their choice.
The survey “found that 48% of respondents in swing states would probably or definitely vote for Trump, compared to just 41% for Biden. Though Biden is narrowly favored overall by likely voters, with 43% favoring him compared to 42% for Trump, the Republican front-runner could win 270 Electoral College votes by seizing the swing states,” the Washington Examiner reported.
Additionally, when considering the challenger Cornel West from the Green Party, Biden’s grip on the overall vote is also not guaranteed. The poll reveals that West has the potential to attract a substantial portion of Biden’s liberal voters, potentially enough to tilt the majority of the ballot in favor of Trump.
“When taking West into consideration, Biden’s share of the vote drops to 42%, with West taking 4% of the vote. Trump emerges triumphant with 43% of the vote,” the Examiner added. “Trump’s lead in swing states is further solidified when West is involved as well. Trump’s share remains at 48%, while Biden’s drops to 40%.”
West can play a decisive role in the overall outcome of next year’s race if he decides to stay in as a third-party candidate.
“There is always a danger a third-party candidate can impact the Electoral College results, particularly if they receive enough votes in a battleground state or states to change the outcome,” University of Akron (Ohio) political science Prof. David B. Cohen told Newsweek. “In a close election, Cornel West could well be a spoiler.”
He noted further: “There is no evidence to suggest that the 2024 election will be anything but a very close election decided by razor-thin margins, which means that a third-party candidate could have an outsized influence in the result.”
Trump has been outpolling Biden in recent months. In May, for instance, an ABC/Washington Post survey showed him with a whopping 7-point lead over Biden, Mediaite reported.
“According to the survey, the president trails his predecessor by 7 points in a hypothetical 2024 general election matchup. Respondents were asked whether they would ‘definitely’ vote for Trump or Biden, ‘probably’ vote for Trump or Biden, or vote for someone else or not vote at all. Among those who ‘definitely’ prefer one candidate over the other, Trump leads Biden 36-32. But when those ‘probably’ voting are added to the tally, Trump’s margin balloons to 7 points — as he holds a 45-38 advantage over Biden,” the report said.