Run again? Poll finds Biden’s bad 2024 numbers get better, Trump’s bad numbers get worse

Americans remain decidedly unenthusiastic about the prospect of a Joe Biden-Donald Trump rematch in the 2024 presidential election, a new USA TODAY/Suffolk University Poll finds.

But in an intriguing bit of data, President Biden’s position among Democrats has gotten a little stronger over the past few months while former President Trump’s position among Republicans has gotten a little weaker.

Both men have indicated they expect to announce their intentions for the next campaign sometime after the results are in for this year’s midterm elections, now just 11 days away. 

The poll of 1,000 likely midterm voters, taken by landline and cellphone Oct. 19-24, has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.

Donald Trump and Joe Biden faced off during the final presidential debate at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee, on October 22, 2020.

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In a prospective presidential race, Biden leads Trump 46%-42% – a 4-point margin that mirrors Biden’s 4.2-point defeat of Trump in 2020. That’s the same 4-point margin Biden held over Trump, 45%-41%, in the USA TODAY/Suffolk poll taken in July.

Biden’s bad numbers get better

By 64%-26%, voters don’t want Biden to run for a second term. 

Those findings are nothing to brag about, but they are a bit of an improvement from the summer, when those surveyed by 69%-22% didn’t want him to run.

Biden’s standing among Democrats has significantly brightened. By 45%-43%, they now say they want him to run. In July, only 35% of Democrats wanted him to run; 50% didn’t.

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Trump’s bad numbers get worse

By 68%-27%, voters don’t want Trump to run for a second term.

Those findings have deteriorated a bit since the summer, when by 65%-28% voters wanted him to forgo another bid for the White House. 

Trump’s standing among Republicans has sagged, although he is still more popular within his own party than Biden is in his. GOP voters by 56%-39% want Trump to run again. That’s a decline of a few points from July, when by 60%-34% Republicans supported another race.

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With ratings, maybe it’s all relative

Biden’s job-approval rating has risen since the summer, to 44% approve-53% disapprove. His standing is still underwater by 9 points, but it beats his July rating of 39%-56%.

In the new poll, the president’s favorable-unfavorable rating is 45%-51%.

That 6-point deficit doesn’t shine until you compare it to Trump’s rating, of 35%-58%. Or consider the comparison with the other branches of government: The president’s favorable rating is slightly higher than that for the Supreme Court, at 41%, and it swamps that of the U.S. Congress, at 27%.