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By Mae Slater on
 May 15, 2024

Trump Leads In Five States, Young and Nonwhite Voters Abandoning Biden

Former President Donald J. Trump leads President Biden in five of six key battleground states, driven by discontent among young, Black, and Hispanic voters over the economy and the Gaza conflict.

A new set of polls from The New York Times, Siena College, and The Philadelphia Inquirer reveals that Trump is ahead of Biden among registered voters in Michigan, Arizona, Nevada, Georgia, and Pennsylvania. Only in Wisconsin does Biden maintain a lead among registered voters.

Among likely voters, Trump continues to lead in five states. However, Biden has a slight edge in Michigan and trails narrowly in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania. Notably, Trump’s lead is bolstered by significant support from young, Black, and Hispanic voters, traditionally strongholds for Democrats.

The inclusion of minor-party candidates and independent candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. did not significantly alter the overall trends.

These results come despite significant developments since the last similar polls in November, such as a 25% rise in the stock market, Trump’s criminal trial commencement, and extensive Biden campaign ads.

Key Issues Influencing Voter Sentiment

Major issues affecting voter sentiment include the economy and cost of living, immigration, and Israel’s war in Gaza. Nearly 70% of voters believe the political and economic systems need major changes or a complete overhaul. Only 13% of Biden supporters think he will bring major changes in a second term.

Trump has unexpectedly strong support among young and nonwhite voters. Many of these voters blame Biden more than Trump for the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade in 2022. Despite 64% of voters believing abortion should be mostly or always legal, which could be leveraged by Biden, Trump leads substantially among voters who think the political and economic systems should be torn down.

Jennifer Wright, a registered nurse in Sterling Heights, Mich., expressed her concerns about financial security. “Who is the best candidate who is going to help me be in a financial situation to retire?” she asked. She added, “Even me, as a registered nurse, I’m buying Kroger brand or store brand. I’m not buying Jif. We’ve all had to cut back.”

Jacob Sprague, a systems engineer in Reno, Nev., voiced his discontent with the current economic situation. “It is concerning to me when I keep seeing the press come out of the White House where they keep saying the economy is good. That’s really weird because I’m paying more on taxes and more on groceries and more on housing and more on fuel. So that doesn’t feel good.”

Gerard Willingham, a web administrator in Riverdale, Ga., highlighted how the political climate has influenced his voting decisions. “I think it’s made quite a bit of difference in that it made me more heavily than in the past push toward voting for a third party, even if I feel that the candidates almost 100 percent won’t win. It’s starting to reach into my moral conscience, I guess,” he said.

Moderate and conservative Democratic-leaning voters are primarily driving Biden's losses. Israel’s war in Gaza, in particular, affects Biden’s support from his left-wing voters. Voter dissatisfaction stems from issues such as foreign policy and the economic situation.

Polling Methodology and Error Margins

The survey, conducted from April 28 to May 9, 2024, included registered voters. It used telephone interviews in English and Spanish, with a margin of error ranging from plus or minus 3.6% to 4.6% in individual states.

In conclusion, Trump’s lead in five key battleground states underscores significant discontent among young, Black, and Hispanic voters with Biden’s handling of the economy and the Gaza conflict. Despite efforts to bolster his campaign, Biden faces an uphill battle to regain the support of crucial voter demographics.

The findings reveal widespread dissatisfaction with the current political and economic systems, posing challenges for both candidates as they navigate the complex landscape of the 2024 election.

Written By:
Mae Slater

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