Just 26% of Democrats said they would prefer Biden as their party’s candidate, with 64% saying they want to see someone else head the ticket, according to The New York Times/Siena College Research Institute survey of registered voters.
While that finding is potentially very bad news for the 79-year-old incumbent’s re-election hopes, the poll has even worse news for Biden when it comes to younger Democratic voters, and to how all voters see the country’s direction.
A whopping 94% of Democrats who are less than 30 years old said they want someone besides Biden to be their nominee, the survey found.
The president’s age and job performance were the top reasons cited by Democratic respondents why they wanted a candidate other than Biden to be the party nominee. Thirty-three percent cited Biden’s age, while 32% cited displeasure with the work he has done while in the White House.
Just 13% of voters of all kinds say the United States is “on the right track,” while 77% said it was “headed in the wrong direction.”
But there was one bright spot for Biden.
Biden would likely defeat former President Donald Trump again in the next election if it were held today, according to the survey. Trump has strongly suggested he will run for the White House a third time in 2024.
The poll found that 44% of registered voters questioned said they would vote for Biden, compared with 41% who said they would back Trump, the Republican he beat in 2020.
The Times/Siena survey was conducted from last Tuesday through Thursday, and questioned 849 voters. It had a margin of error of 4.1 percentage points.
The poll comes nearly 18 months into Biden’s first term in the White House.
Gallup on Monday released a new poll that found that just 33% of respondents believe Biden deserves to be reelected, while 67% said he does not deserve a second term. That is 4 percentage points lower than the level of support for re-election Trump saw in an April 2018 poll, which came more than two years before he faced Biden.
The two polls also come less than four month’s before the congressional midterm elections in early November.
Biden’s fellow Democrats hold a majority by only 10 seats in the House of Representatives. Democrats hold the barest of majorities in the Senate, where they have 48 seats and two independents who caucus with them. Vice President Kamala Harris’ power to break tie votes in that chamber gives Democrats control despite 50 Republicans holding seats.
In the Times/Siena poll, the top problems that voters believe are facing the U.S. were the economy, which 20% of respondents identified as the most important problem, followed by “inflation and the cost of living,” which 15% identified.
Eleven percent of respondents identified “the state of democracy” or “political division” as their top concern, while 10% said gun policies were the most important problem.
Abortion and women’s rights were cited as the top concern for 5% of respondents.
The Supreme Court in a major ruling on June 24 said there is no federal right to abortion, reversing a nearly half-century-old opinion that it issued in the Roe v. Wade case. The decision is expected to ultimately result in abortion being banned or more severely restricted than it previously was in nearly half of the U.S. states.