Since August 2021, when President Joe Biden executed the disastrous pullout from Afghanistan, he’s been underwater in the polls. According to the RealClearPolitics polling average, he never got above 46% approval in all that time, and he usually hovers between 38 and 40%. The latest war under his watch has not helped his approval numbers, and his polling against Trump and other Republicans is even worse. For many reasons, this war in Israel could be the final nail in the coffin of the Biden re-election campaign.
First is the tragic reason, at least for the Jewish community and the supporters of Israel. There are many people in swing states, particularly in large Muslim communities, who want to see Biden throw Israel under the bus. Michigan, the home of Rashida Tlaib, went for Trump in 2016 and Biden in 2020. Minnesota, the home of Ilhan Omar, went Blue in both elections, but Trump lost by a mere 20,000 votes.
Other states that are deep Blue still have congressional races that could be determined by reactions to the war in Israel. New York saw a radical Republican turnout for such a blue state in 2022, with a large Republican delegation being sent to Washington. The Democrats, on the other hand, have radical anti-Semites Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and Jamaal Bowman as part of their delegation, and New York voters in surrounding areas may punish Democrats in general for association with those radicals.
It’s tragic that so many people are turning on Biden for being too pro-Israel when he’s already beginning to cave to the leftist pressure. Biden called on Israel to have a “humanitarian pause” (whatever that means) in Gaza and vowed to veto an Israel-only aid package. This shows that he’s buckling. Biden has never been able to stand firm against his left flank for very long. The consistent protests outside the White House calling him “Genocide Joe” are getting to him.
Then there’s the latest battleground state poll numbers. One year before the 2024 election, in five out of six critical swing states, Biden is trailing Donald Trump, by margins ranging from four to ten percentage points among registered voters. Biden holds a two-point lead in Wisconsin, but he is behind in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, and Pennsylvania.
Some conservative pundits, like Ben Shapiro, downplay the impact that hatred for Israel will have on the 2024 election. “What are they going to do,” Shapiro asked, referring to anti-Israel Democrat voters, “turn around and vote for Trump? The most pro-Israel president in US history?” While it is inconceivable that the leftists would vote for Trump, what Shapiro is discounting are those who will leave the president blank on the ballot or just stay home due to their dissatisfaction, like he did in 2016.
The polls also reveal widespread dissatisfaction with Biden’s policies in general, with a majority of voters believing that his policies have personally harmed them. The coalition that helped elect Biden in 2020 is showing signs of fraying, as demographic groups that strongly supported him are now more evenly divided. Younger voters, Hispanic voters, and urban residents are less firmly in Biden’s corner, and men now favor Trump by a significant margin. Notably, Black voters, who have traditionally supported Democrats, are registering 22 percent support for Trump in these battleground states, a level unseen in modern Republican presidential politics.
The polls indicate a significant shift in sentiment among voters, with those who believe the country is on the wrong track expressing their frustration by turning against Biden. While Biden still has time to improve his standing, the results highlight the challenges he faces. Furthermore, the polls show a growing perception of Biden’s age and mental sharpness as liabilities, with 71 percent of respondents believing he is “too old” to be an effective president. Trump, who is just two years younger, doesn’t face the same perception problem. Voters also trust Trump more than Biden on economic matters, which is a significant concern for the Biden campaign, as economic issues are expected to play a pivotal role in the 2024 election.
Yet the economy has been a disaster for over two years, and Biden has been doddering and old for longer than that. What changed for people is the very real perception that the world was not on first with Trump, and is on fire under Biden. Ironically, the people who shouted that Trump would crash the economy and start World War III have crashed the economy and are on the precipice of World War III. If the war in Israel may just have been the straw the broke the camel’s back for these voters.
The election is a year away, and a lot can happen between now and then. Trump is facing four trials. Biden is facing impeachment. Both of these candidates are the oldest candidates ever to have run for president from either party. That doesn’t change the fact that if the election were held today, Biden would be out of a job. Weak leadership will do that.
By Moshe Hill