Why Biden just can’t shake Trump in the polls

Why Biden just can’t shake Trump in the polls

Ronald Brownstein writes:

Like so many bands of wind and rain, hurricane-strength squalls of bad news have battered former President Donald Trump all year. Since April, he’s been indicted four times, on 91 separate felony charges, compared with zero counts for all of his White House predecessors. Trump often likes to claim that anything associated with him is the most spectacular, even when it’s not, but when it comes to accumulating criminal charges, he’s the undisputed champ of former presidents.

President Joe Biden, by contrast, has been basking in mostly good news. Over recent months, inflation has mostly moderated, job growth has remained steady, and the stock market has recovered briskly. Seemingly every week, Biden cuts a ribbon for an ambitious infrastructure project or new clean-energy plant made possible by a trio of sweeping laws he signed during his first two years. The chaos predicted at the southern border when Biden ended Title 42, the pandemic-era Trump policy, never materialized. Crime rates are declining in many major cities.

And yet national polls, as well as surveys in the key swing states, consistently show Biden and Trump locked in a dead heat when voters are asked about a possible 2024 rematch between them.

“It is a sad reality that the race could be this close given Trump’s position, but it is. And I think it’s very clear that Trump can win this race if the election was tomorrow,” the Democratic pollster Andrew Baumann told me.

Political operatives and scientists agree on one key reason Biden and Trump remain so closely paired in a potential rematch: In our polarized political era, far fewer voters than in the past are open to switching sides for any reason. [Continue reading…]

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