A recent NBC poll shows that President Joe Biden would defeat former President Donald J. Trump in a head-to-head matchup by four points (49 percent to 45 percent). This poll is well within the margin of error, meaning that anything can happen.
With the election still being a year away, and with multiple candidates challenging Trump for the GOP nomination—as well as with the significant threat posed to Biden from Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., in the DNC Primary—truly anything can happen to negate the findings of this NBC poll.
Donald Trump Likely Loses to Biden
Still, the likeliest outcome of the 2024 Presidential Primaries remains at this point Donald Trump receiving the Republican nominee and Joe Biden getting the Democratic Party’s nomination to run for president.
If that is the case, then, this poll—as well as several others—consistently indicates that Biden will defeat Trump.
Supporters of the forty-fifth president will undoubtedly counter with inapt historical comparisons to the polling in the 2016 Presidential Election which showed Donald Trump being defeated soundly by Hillary Clinton.
Certainly, polls have a track record of being wrong.
Yet, the polling processes for anticipating political outcomes in the Age of Trump have gotten better. Pollsters have spent the last several years refining their methodologies and honing into whatever statistical blind spots that may have existed in 2016.
Point in fact, the polls got the outcome of the 2020 Presidential Election fairly accurate. When it came to the Republicans’ chances in the 2022 Midterms, the polls were weighted in the GOP’s favor—only to have been proven wrong.
So, we might be reaching a tipping point in terms of polling where things are actually bleaker for the Trump Campaign than they appear in the polling. The main issue here is that the former president might not be the best person for the GOP to match against Joe Biden.
Sure, Biden has been a major disaster for this country. Things might go downhill even more than they already have under Biden’s “leadership.” There is certainly a gigantic coverup afoot to protect Hunter Biden (and, by extension, the rest of the Biden Family). Despite all these factors, shockingly, Trump is such a divisive figure that he might turn independents who’d otherwise elect a generic Republican candidate in 2024 against the GOP.
The fact that the polling is so tight between Biden and Trump is partly a reflection of how divided the electorate is. At the same time, most Americans have a very low approval rating for Joe Biden’s presidency. It should not be that difficult for the opposition party to overcome whatever incumbency advantages Biden possesses.
Yet, with Trump at the top of the ticket, that is precisely what happens. And this potential outcome has repeated itself across a variety of polls conducted since Trump announced his candidacy in November of last year.
DeSantis is Probably the GOP’s Best Bet
It goes deeper than this, though. If DeSantis were the nominee in 2024 to square off against Joe Biden, DeSantis would likely win for a variety of factors—one of them is that voters have a more favorable view of DeSantis than they do of either Trump or Biden.
When faced with Biden and the forty-sixth president’s alleged corruption as well as the turgid economy and disruptive social policies, voters would prefer the younger DeSantis as their president.
Therefore, DeSantis’ biggest issue will be overcoming the staggering lead that Trump has over him in the GOP Primary. Although, DeSantis, unlike Trump, has the most room to grow. That the election is still so early means that DeSantis is likely to be able to catch up to Trump.
If Trump loses to DeSantis, Biden will lose to the Republicans in the General Election. If not, the data indicates that Trump will have severe difficulties that another Republican candidate might not have in beating “Sleepy” Joe Biden (who already defeated Trump once).
A 19FortyFive Senior Editor, Brandon J. Weichert is a former Congressional staffer and geopolitical analyst who is a contributor at The Washington Times, as well as at American Greatness and the Asia Times. He is the author of Winning Space: How America Remains a Superpower (Republic Book Publishers), Biohacked: China’s Race to Control Life (Encounter Books), and The Shadow War: Iran’s Quest for Supremacy (July 23). Weichert can be followed via Twitter @WeTheBrandon.