The frontrunners on either side of the aisle for the 2024 presidential election are not popular, according to a former White House official.
What Polls Tell: Most voters want neither Donald Trump nor President Joe Biden to run for office and a majority prefer staying on the sidelines, said Karl Rove, a former White House official who served under ex-president George W Bush, said in a Wall Street Journal op-ed.
The former chief of staff, who served between 2004 and 2007, cited numbers from several polls to support his argument. The results of the June 13 Economist/YouGov poll showed that only 33% wanted Trump to run and a more modest 23% backed Biden for president. About 56% of Republicans said they preferred to stay out and a similar sentiment was expressed by 59% of the Democrats, he said.
Citing an April 18 NBC poll, Rove said 70% of Americans think Biden shouldn’t run for a second term and 60% did not want Trump to contest again. He also noted that 48% gave a negative rating for Biden, with 38% of them giving a very negative rating. Trump’s tally of negative ratings is 53%, with 44% being very negative, he added.
Why It’s Important: Either frontrunners are not preferred, Rove said, adding that people might view Biden as too weak and too far left, and Trump as someone who is too destructive and corrupt.
The poll results also reflect a desire for a generational shift, the diplomat said.
“Americans may think we can do better for president than two men who’ll be a combined 160 years old by the time we vote next year.”
With Biden, Americans elected the first president from the “pre-boomer Silent Generation,” those born between 1928 and 1945, Rove said. It’s within the power of the people to bring about a generational shift, he added.
Although most Republicans and Democrats voters now lean heavily toward Trump and Biden, a rematch between these two would be nastier and uglier than it was in 2020, Rove said. The former staffer also said turnout could even drop as many voters are turned off.
“Our nation is deeply divided and angry; it faces tremendous challenges at home and dangers abroad,” Rove said.
“These are best confronted by energetic new leadership. Whichever party figures this out will have the upper hand next year.”
Produced in association with Benzinga
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