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New poll shows overwhelming consensus that Biden is too old to run again; nearly half of Democrats agree

by | Mar 2, 2023

By Dave Andrusko

With the prospect of being 82 years old if he were to run again and win, it probably comes as no surprise that a “majority of voters” [68%] and even a “plurality of Democrats” [48%] “say Biden is too old to run again.”

Yahoo News’s Andrew Romano writes

The survey of 1,516 U.S. adults, which was conducted from Feb. 23 to 27, underscores the central challenge facing the oldest president in American history as he gears up for a likely reelection bid — and the difficult position his age is putting his party in.

According to the Yahoo News/You Gov poll it’s not that Democrats disapprove of his performance in office: 77% approve. Yet, Romano writes,

Despite viewing Biden favorably, many Democrats seem wary of what comes next. Asked in June 2020 “how concerned” they were “about Joe Biden’s health and mental acuity,” just 28% of Democrats said they were either somewhat (10%) or very concerned (18%); the other 72% said they were either slightly (28%) or not at all concerned (44%).

Today, more than two and a half years later, the combined number of somewhat or very concerned Democrats has risen 12 points to about 40%, while the combined number who are slightly or not at all concerned has fallen by the same amount, to about 60%.

“The Yahoo News/YouGov poll suggests that Democrats have reason to worry,” Romano writes:

A majority of registered voters (56%) now agree that “there is an age at which somebody is too old to be president” (up from 50% in June 2020), and 45% choose 80 or younger as the age they consider too old for the job.

What about independents?

Among independents — the key voting group that often decides elections — 60% say someone can be too old for the presidency, and a majority (54%) set that threshold at 80 or younger.

As John Sexton observed,

That’s obviously a problem for Biden as it’s hard to see how he’s going to win those people back at this point. They’ve seen what they’ve seen.

So, what does the President have going for him? Glad you asked. It’s the alternative:

If forced to choose between Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris for the nomination, more than twice as many Democrats and Democratic leaners say they would pick Biden (53%) over Harris (24%). And “if Joe Biden does not run for reelection,” nearly half say they would rather see “someone else” as the nominee (49%) than Harris (36%)…

Stay tuned.

Categories: Polling