04.18.2024 0

Poll: 5.5 percent of 2020 Biden voters now supporting Trump as race shifts to persuasion with cost of living rising

By Robert Romano

In the latest Emerson poll showing former President Donald Trump leading incumbent President Joe Biden by 3 points, 46 percent to 43 percent, a remarkable 5.5 percent of 2020 Biden voters now say they are supporting Trump in 2024. Comparatively only 0.9 percent of 2020 Trump voters say they are supporting Biden.

In the same poll 47.8 percent said they had voted for Biden in 2020, who drops by 4 points because a small percentage of them now say they are backing Trump who grows by 2.5 points from 43.4 percent.  

75 percent of those polled said their cost of living was increasing, including 60 percent of 2020 Biden supporters. Only 14.6 percent of Biden’s 2020 supporters said the cost of living was easing, meaning not everyone is buying the happy talk from the White House about inflation slowing down.

That could be the key in 2024, which are Biden voters who regret supporting him in 2020, and want a redo.

Generally, for Biden, the problem is one of persuasion—and recovering lost ground. For Trump, the inflation presents an opportunity to capitalize on the general sense that the American people’s purchasing power isn’t what it used to be.

Similar problems plagued single-term presidents Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter and George H.W. Bush in 1976, 1980 and 1992 respectively who were unable to close that persuasion gap among disgruntled former supporters.

Biden’s problem is it is hard to argue with a household’s inability to get ahead amid high prices, interest rates and accumulating debt. Those are circumstances that have the ability to persuade just as much as any fiery speech on the campaign trail or political ad.

Personal income hasn’t kept up with prices, only rising 16.7 percent since Feb. 2021, while consumer prices are up 18.45 percent since that time.

And as November is now just a stone’s throw away, voter attitudes about their pocketbooks in general could be hardening, with swing voters saying they’ve had enough.

The bad news for Biden is that prices are not bound to come substantially down, especially with elevated oil prices once again amid global tensions the Federal Reserve stating that interest rates might be staying high for the foreseeable future.

At an event in Washington, D.C. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell stated April 16 that inflation was taking longer than expected to come down: “The recent data have clearly not given us greater confidence and instead indicate that it’s likely to take longer than expected to achieve that confidence.”

Meaning, when it comes to persuading the American people that things are turning around, Biden could be in for a hard sell.

Robert Romano is the Vice President of Public Policy at Americans for Limited Government Foundation.

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