President Biden would be defeated by a generic Republican if he were up for re-election now — but would best former President Donald Trump, former Vice President Mike Pence and Sen. Ted Cruz in a head-to-head matchup, according to a new poll out Wednesday.
The Politico/Morning Consult poll found Biden trailing a hypothetical GOP contender by nine percentage points (46 percent to 37 percent), but eking out popular-vote wins over Trump (45 percent to 44 percent) and Pence (44 percent to 42 percent).
The survey also found that the incumbent president would easily defeat Cruz (45 percent to 39 percent) and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (44 percent to 39 percent).
The poll also indicated that the 45th president would cruise to the GOP nomination if he opted to enter the 2024 White House race.
When asked whom they would support in a hypothetical Republican primary, 49 percent of voters chose Trump, with DeSantis a distant second at 14 percent and Pence close behind him with 13 percent support. No other potential candidate named in the poll got above 5 percent, while Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) — the 2012 GOP presidential nominee — garnered 4 percent support.
When asked whom they would back if Trump does not run — but his oldest son, Donald Trump Jr., does — 25 percent of voters backed DeSantis, while 24 percent said they would support the former first son. Fourteen percent said they would choose “someone else” while 12 percent said they would support Pence.
The poll also showed that Biden remains saddled with a low favorability rating of 42 percent while 56 percent disapprove of his performance as president, with 39 percent doing so “strongly.”
Just over two-thirds of voters (68 percent) also believe the US is on the “wrong track.”
When asked what issues were most on their minds in the November midterm elections, voters overwhelmingly chose the economy (40 percent).
Terrorism and border security came in second at 14 percent, followed closely by health care (13 percent), senior issues (10 percent) and women’s issues — defined as birth control, abortion and equal pay — at 6 percent.
Six percent of voters said they were most concerned about energy issues, including the cost of gas and electricity as well as carbon emissions, while 4 percent said education — including school standards, class size and student loans — was most important to them.
The poll surveyed 2,005 registered voters between Jan. 22 and 23 and has a margin of error of plus or minus two percentage points.