A majority of Democratic voters are itching to vote for somebody other than Joe Biden in 2024, even as party leaders rally around the aging, deeply unpopular president.
The CNBC survey found that a whopping 57 percent of Democrats, and 70 percent of voters overall, do not want Biden to run for re-election.
Dems tired of Biden
Donald Trump is doing comparatively better in the poll, with 61 percent of voters saying they don’t want Trump to run again.
Biden’s support with Democrats also appears to be softer than Trump’s is among Republicans, contrary to the prevalent narrative about the midterm elections, which have been widely interpreted as a repudiation of Trump and a boon to his rival.
Fifty-seven percent of Democrats don’t want Biden running again, but the percentage of Republicans who don’t want Trump to run is 20 points lower, at 37 percent.
Sixty-six percent of independents and 86 percent of Republicans don’t want Biden to run, compared to 61 percent of independents and 88 percent of Democrats who don’t want Trump to run. Just 19 percent of voters think Biden should run, compared to 30 percent who said the same for Trump.
Another contrast: 47 percent of voters who don’t want Biden to run cited age as a factor, including 61 percent of Democrats, while just 8 percent of voters who don’t want Trump to run said age was a reason.
The prevalence of concern with Biden’s age, even among Democrats, is striking considering the media’s continued, strained silence on the topic. The New York Times recently published a puff piece marking Biden’s 80th birthday that said, “age is more than a number.”
Biden is the oldest president in American history. His overall support fell from 46 percent in October to 41 percent, with disapproval jumping from 50 percent to 54 percent amid widespread pessimism about the economy, the CNBC poll found.
The poll of 801 Americans nationwide was conducted Nov. 26-30 and has an error margin of 3.5 percent.
Party leaders embrace Biden anyway
The survey results suggest that voters continue to doubt Biden’s leadership, despite a better-than-expected performance for his party in the midterm elections that Biden has touted as a resounding mandate from the people.
One problem for Democrats is a lack of alternatives, which has left many embracing Biden as the party’s best option of denying Trump a second term.
Party leaders have been lining up behind Biden after Democrats expanded their Senate majority and lost the House by a smaller margin than expected, with just a handful of Democrats vocalizing lingering concerns about Biden’s fitness.
“If he were 60 and not 80, there would be absolutely no doubt,” Obama strategist David Axelrod said.