Joe Biden’s presidential campaign has just been hit with some crushing news.
Fox News reports that President Donald Trump’s re-election team believes that he is currently in a better position against Biden than he was against Hillary Clinton at this same point four years ago.
Ahead of the game
Erin Perrine, Trump 2020’s director of press communications, discussed the current state of election efforts in a recent interview with the network. “Anywhere we look at this point on the states we’re tracking, we are ahead of where we were in 2016,” Perrine told Fox.
During her appearance, Perrine focused on two areas from which she is deriving confidence in the president’s re-election chances — improved grassroots operations in battleground states and recent shifts in polling numbers.
“The campaign is doing exceptionally well across the country. We have made over 75 million voter contacts,” she said, according to Fox. “And to compare that to 2016, we had made just over 30 million the entire cycle.”
Poll numbers improve
Perrine also claimed that Trump is doing better against Biden in the polls that he was against Clinton at the same point in the 2016 election season.
“We’re doing better now at this point in the election cycle than we were in ’16,” Perrine said. “Even if you look at the Fox News poll numbers, we’re ahead of where we were.”
Fox News noted: “In short, Biden is up 8 points currently in the Fox News poll over Trump, whereas in the June and August 2016 polls Clinton’s advantage was 6 points and 10 points, respectively.”
Similarly, in the RealClearPolitics average of national polls, Biden is currently leading Trump by 6.4 percentage points. At this same point in 2016, Clinton had a 7.2 percentage-point lead over Trump.
Perhaps, though, what is most encouraging about these poll numbers is that they are going in the right direction for President Trump — the gap is starting to tighten as November draws nearer.
Cause for optimism
There are several reasons to remain cautious despite these strong indicators, according to Fox News, including the fact that the president’s approval ratings are not in favorable territory, and Trump has fallen behind Biden in virtually every national poll since January. Still, Perrine believes optimism is warranted, telling Fox:
We have a candidate who has a record and a message that the American people can connect with. Joe Biden, no matter what he spends on ads or how he tries to spin it, he doesn’t have a record to sell.
Time will tell how things unfold in the coming days and whether Biden’s imminent vice presidential pick has any appreciable impact on his electoral fortunes. But with Trump currently outpacing his 2016 performance against Clinton at a comparable point in the election season, there is no reason to doubt that a similar outcome is in the offing.