Last week Politico reported on a Trump-commissioned pollThis shows that Trump is out-polling Biden among the five key swing states of Arizona (Georgia), Georgia, Pennsylvania (Michigan) and Wisconsin. A national election is also taking place. Rasmussen pollThe picture showed Trump leading Biden during a hypothetical rematch with a stomach-churning 13. percent.
If these polls are anywhere near accurate, the country — and the world — faces the all-too-real possibility that, in November 2024, the twice-impeached, coup-plotting, fascist-flirting Donald Trump could be elected as the 47th president of the U.S.
There are many reasons for concern about polls three years after a presidential vote. And there are many things that could impede a Trump comeback. Trump is currently under investigation New YorkIn GeorgiaHe could be indicted for or convicted of tax fraud or intimidation against election officials before the 2024 primary season. Although public opinion has sunk in favor of Biden, it is possible to reverse that trend if inflation is brought under control and if the Build back Better Act passes. If large numbers of people experience significant benefits in their everyday lives as a direct result of its passage, then this could be a positive step. And, perhaps the greatest unknown is whether the pandemic will continue to wreak havoc on the world — in which case incumbents of all political persuasions the world over may well suffer at the hands of ever-more-frustrated electorates — or will, by 2024, be a thing of the past.
It’s also possible that Biden, who will be well into his 80s by the next election, will, despite current plans to run again, announce that he is not seeking reelection, and will step aside to allow for a younger candidate, with less political baggage from a COVID-era presidency, to step up to the plate. And it’s also possible that, if the GOP gains control of Congress next November, they will push policies that are so extreme and so unpopular that national support for the party and its presidential nominee will evaporate.
All of these reasons make head-to-head polling 2021 about an election that will not take place until 2024 a poor science. We would be foolish to dismiss these polls and the wider trends they suggest without panicking.
In 32 states, including all 11 of the states that are considered to be plausibly swing states, Biden’s numbers have fallen off a cliff since the summer. Recent polls show that Biden’s numbers have fallen in a number of states. Biden’s net disapproval ratings range from a modest 1 percent all the way up to Rasmussen’s 17 percent. That doesn’t mean he can’t win reelection — Bill Clinton’s numbers were similarly dire in 1993, and yet he easily won reelection in 1996, ending his presidency with sky-high approval numbers; and Reagan was also deeply unpopular early in his presidency and won reelection in a landslide — but it does mean that, at the moment, he has a mountain to climb to restore public confidence in his administration.
Having spent the past six months fighting among themselves and failing to pass Biden’s signature Build Back Better Act, along with their failure to break the GOP filibuster and pass meaningful federal voting rights protections, the Democrats are intensely vulnerable heading into the 2022 midterms. That danger is compounded by GOP efforts in numerous states to restrict the franchise; by an unprecedented level of gerrymandering in states such as North Carolina, Ohio and Texas that threatens to lock minoritarian GOP rule into place for decades at both the state level and, by gerrymandered congressional districts, increasingly at the federal level; and by the fact that the Republican Party, now entirely committed to Trump’s lies about a stolen election, has dedicated itself to undermining the integrity of the election system in order to secure, no matter the cost to the country’s democratic culture and system of governance, a GOP presidential victory in 2024.
If the GOP, with “Stop the Steal” candidates playing increasingly prominent roles, locks into place their state-level grip on power in 2022 and retakes control of the House of Representatives, the party’s ability to successfully manipulate the 2024 presidential election will have taken a giant leap forward.
Trump, who has been urging the party into ever more anti-democratic positions while sitting in Florida is acutely aware of the dynamics. Next month will be the first. the real estate mogul’s Super PAC, with the absurd moniker “Make America Great Again, Again,” is holding a big fund-raising event at Mar-a-Lago. The GOP’s top donors are expected to gather there to plan out their routes back to power. Trump has opened Mar-a-Lago for a number of events. fundraisers for anointed candidatesIn races in key states across the country. In recent weeks, he and his evil family aggressively pursued the most conservative wing. After Kyle Rittenhouse, a teenage vigilante, was acquitted in his murder trial Donald Trump Jr. shared a photoshopped meme of his father ostensibly giving a Congressional Medal of Honor to Rittenhouse. In the meantime, the QAnon Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene — who spent much of last week issuing a set of Trumpian demands she wanted met before promising to back Kevin McCarthy as House Speaker should the GOP win a majority next year — actually didIntroduce a bill in Congress to bestow Rittenhouse this highest honor.
Greene’s bill has, of course, a snowball’s chance in hell of passage; but that’s not the point of the stunt. The point is publicity and riling up an already angry, heavily armed base around the wedge issues of race and guns in the U.S. It’s pure Trumpist exhibitionism, and a sign of just how low Trump, his Super PACThe ex-president and his Congressional aides will be traveling as he plans a comeback. The Democratic base is growing disillusioned with the presidency, which many see as failing to deliver on racial justice, economic promises, or its more ambitious climate change goals.
The 2024 elections are still far away. Democrats, who are already facing formidable headwinds, would do well not to clean their houses and prepare for the Trumpian machinations that are clearly on their way in the next election cycles. We all remember the consequences of the party’s leadership underestimating Trump in 2015 and 2016. If they made a similar mistake in the future, it would be a sign of political incompetence and a huge surrender to deeply anti-democratic forces.