Will President Joe Biden be on the ballot in the presidential election of 2024? It’s a question that Biden seemed to answer four months ago when he announced, in an online video, that he would be running for re-election next year. ‘Let’s finish this job,’ he said. ‘Because I know we can.’
Team Biden must have hoped that, after making that announcement, the doubts surrounding his bid for re-election would go away. As the polls increasingly show Donald Trump cruising towards a re-nomination for the Republican ticket, America appears then to be heading – grimly, inevitably – towards a repeat of 2020. Trump vs Biden 2024: this time it’s more depressing.
But the concerns about Joe Biden’s fitness for office now, let alone another four years, have never gone away. In fact, they’re intensifying again.
He’s an unpopular president: his approval ratings have remained stuck around 40 per cent, though it’s worth noting Obama’s were not much better. The Biden administration like nothing more than to talk up his economic accomplishments – record jobs! Manufacturing boom! – yet the public doesn’t agree. Some 60 per cent of Americans now say that Biden’s policies have made the country worse off. The number of people who think America is on the ‘right track’ under his leadership is currently less than 25 per cent.
Democrats can and will find comfort in telling themselves that Biden beat Trump in 2020 and, with the added advantages of incumbency, he can do it in 2024. America isn’t really going to vote for Donald Trump again, is it?
Well, the polls suggest it might. The latest CNN survey suggests Trump has a very slight advantage over Biden. According to the same poll, other Republican contenders for the nomination do better than Trump when pitted against Biden – Nikki Haley, for instance, had a six-percentage-point advantage.