President Joe Biden has insisted that he has not decided whether to run for a second term. But the public sure.
Nearly three in four Americans (72%) said yes no He wants Biden to run again in 2024, according to a new Marquette Law School national poll released Thursday, a striking number — especially considering that Biden’s approval rating in the same poll was a pretty solid (for him) at 45 percent.
It’s not that large parts of the American public think Biden is doing a terrible job and want him out. That people – across the political spectrum – don’t want him running again after two years.
Republicans are not unexpectedly inclined to abandon Biden (88% do not want to run again), they are also independent (79% do not want to run again). And even among Biden’s Democratic base, his numbers on the question are in the middle, with 52% saying he should run again and another 48% saying he shouldn’t.
According to CNN and New York Times/Siena College polls this summer, large majorities of Democrats wanted the party to nominate someone other than Biden for president in 2024.
It’s not immediately clear why so many people in the Marquette poll oppose Biden’s re-election bid, as the poll didn’t ask respondents to offer reasons for their skepticism. But according to past polls, Biden’s advanced age (he’s 79 and will turn 82 after the 2024 election) is a big factor in Americans’ doubts about serving a second term.
Regardless of the reasons, it’s clear that Democratic politicians have gotten Biden’s message. Witness House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s response Thursday when asked by CNN whether Biden should run again or drop out in 2024.
“President Biden is the president of the United States,” Pelosi replied. “He did a great service to our country. He defeated Donald Trump, let’s not forget that. I will not get involved in politics whether the president should present or not”.
That’s not the answer to the question!
Other Democrats have been more willing than Pelosi to go on the record with their concerns about a Biden re-nomination.
“My belief is that we need new leadership — Democrats, Republicans, I think it’s time for a generational movement,” Rep. Tim Ryan, the Democratic candidate for Ohio’s open Senate seat, said in a recent interview. . Later, Ryan added, “The president said from the beginning that it was going to be a bridge to the next generation, and that’s basically what I was saying.”
(Verification: True! At a March 2020 campaign event, Biden said: “Look, I see myself as a bridge, not anything else).
Over the summer, Minnesota Rep. Dean Phillips said, “I think the country would be well prepared for a new generation of credible, well-trained, dynamic Democrats to step up.”
Representative Carolyn Maloney of New York said she did not “believe it [Biden is] run for re-election.” (He later apologized and said he wanted to run for Biden.)
And Rep. Angie Craig of Minnesota said, “I would say we need new leaders in Washington up and down the ballot in the Democratic Party.”
It is not at all clear whether doubts within his own party and such polls will affect Biden. His allies will point out, for example, that the same Marquette poll has Biden leading former President Donald Trump and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis in hypothetical general election matchups. In addition, a clear majority of those polled in the survey (69%) also said they do not want Trump to run for the White House again in 2024.
And it’s possible that media attention on a Biden campaign ad — perhaps sometime next spring — will change Americans’ perceptions of whether they should run again.
But the point is that Biden has a perceptional hill to climb. Most Americans do not want him running for a second term.