by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Former President Trump defeats President Biden within the margin of error in a 2024 matchup for the first time in more than a dozen polls conducted by NBC News since 2019.
Asked if the election were held today, 46 percent of respondents said they’d vote for Trump and 44 percent said they’d vote for Biden. In the GOP primary race, 58 percent favored Trump as the nominee, with Governor Ron DeSantis in second place with 18 percent support and former South Carolina governor Nikki Haley in third place with 13 percent support.
However, when any other Republican candidate replaced Trump in the contest, it went from a close dogfight to a confident takedown of Biden. Any alternative to Trump would soundly beat Biden by 9 points, at 48 percent to 37 percent, the NBC poll from November 10-14 showed. Similarly, any other Democratic candidate besides Biden would best Trump by six points.
The poll indicated deep dissatisfaction with Biden’s handling of foreign policy and the Israel-Hamas conflict, especially from within his own party. Biden’s approval sank to 40 percent, a new low for his presidency, according to the poll. A majority of Democrats disagree with the Biden administration’s support for Israel, the poll suggested, with 51 percent believing that Israel’s military response has been excessive versus 27 percent saying it’s been justified.
On foreign policy overall, Biden’s approval is at 33 percent, down 8 percent from September. The poll showed a gaping generational divide on Biden’s leadership regarding the Israel issue, with 53 percent of voters aged 65 and older approving but only 20 percent of voters aged 18-34 approving.
A Gallup poll from October found that Biden’s approval rating among Democrats dropped by eleven percentage points over the month since Hamas’s October 7 invasion of Israel, likely driven by his backing of the Jewish State and an increasing number of progressives who support Palestinians.