A recent poll shows Trump with a significant lead over Biden. But just how accurate could that be?
Note: Some quotes in this piece have been lightly edited for grammar.
Nine Point Lead
A new Emerson Poll shows a nine-point lead for former President Trump over President Biden in Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania is considered a key battleground state, crucial to winning the 2024 election.
Outside the Margin
Several recent polls have shown Trump beating Biden in the President’s home state, but this is the first to place him well outside the margin of error, forcing voters to ask questions.
Many people question the poll’s validity. Emerson used over-the-phone, email, and online polling, but people still asked whether it was accurate. “Most people under 55 don’t answer unknown calls or stop outside the store to answer a political poll,” one commenter said.
Another person noted that younger voters are particularly difficult to get ahold of, saying, “Millennials and Gen Z would rather eat their arm than answer a phone or do a survey.”
At least one commenter noted that Emerson’s poll was particularly strange because of its other results. Though the poll showed Trump ahead of Biden, it also showed Democratic incumbent Bob Casey ahead of Republican Dave McCormick in the state’s senator race.
Still Too Early
Other people were certain that it was too early in the race for any polls to be relevant. “More than one year out from the election. An eternity in politics,” one person said. Notably, 22% of Trump voters and 17% of Biden voters said that something could happen that would change their vote.
Just Not Realistic
A few pointed out that a nine-point lead for Trump suggests a massive shift amongst voters in Pennsylvania, one that doesn’t seem warranted given Trump’s recent legal woes. “Standing on courthouse steps screeching about how unfair life is really turns those voter opinions around,” one person said.
Not About Trump
Still, some commenters noted that it might not be a matter of what Trump has done or said to gain voters. Instead, these poll numbers could reflect a growing hesitancy towards Biden. As one person noted, “All of the movement is from Biden to ‘don’t know.'”
Doesn’t Make Sense
Several people questioned the move amongst younger voters towards Trump. Trump leads Biden 45 percent to 39 percent with the 30 and under crowd, according to this poll. But historically, that age group has swung towards the Democratic candidate.
Some noted that while Trump’s increasing support amongst young voters seemed odd, it also might not matter. Voter turnout in younger demographics is notorious for being low.
Dems Raise Alarm
Still, several Democrats noted that the poll was a little alarming. While many thought a nine-point lead for Trump was unthinkable, one person pointed out that these are strange times. As they put it, “The last eight years have been incomprehensible.”
A few commenters pointed out that these poll results aren’t that surprising. “Aggregate polling has consistently shown Biden losing support,” says one person. A recent Reuters report showed that Biden’s approval rating is near an all-time low.
One person noted that Biden’s lack of support is understandable, given economic factors. Higher gas and food prices aren’t popular amongst voters. His age is also a concern for many, making him a “risky candidate.”
Court Rulings Bring Change
Several people thought that Trump’s legal battles would ultimately reduce his support and give Biden back his edge. However, others pushed back, noting that the indictments seem to be having the opposite effect.
Despite the poll’s results, several people thought Biden would win in 2024. They noted recent special election results, which show Democrats have been consistently out-performing across the United States.
The Other Poll
A different poll by Quinnipiac shows Trump slightly ahead of Biden in a hypothetical 2024 election. As with Emerson’s poll, voters are skeptical about the results.
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