Well, it looks all but inevitable that Joe Biden will wind up with the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, seeing as how the coronavirus has made further primary elections difficult to move forward with. Our guess is that the DNC will basically call the whole thing before/at the convention and simply crown Biden the nominee – you know, the very kind of backroom, “elites choose” sort of thing that they were trying to get away from this year. But even if they do somehow let the rest of the states vote, Bernie Sanders has very little chance at nabbing the nomination anymore. This one is in the bag.
That may not be good news for Democrats hoping to win in November.
According to a new poll from ABC News and the Washington Post, Biden just doesn’t have the kind of enthusiastic support he’ll need to take on Trump successfully. The poll shows that Biden only has the support of 51% of Democratic voters (a big problem) and that he is trailing Trump badly when it comes to enthusiasm among their respective voting bases (an even worse problem).
“Former Vice President Joe Biden has emerged as Democrats’ top choice for the presidential nomination in a new ABC News/Washington Post poll, but with only bare majority support within his party and a massive enthusiasm gap in a November matchup against President Donald Trump,” reports ABC News.
“Indeed, strong enthusiasm for Biden among his supporters – at just 24% – is the lowest on record for a Democratic presidential candidate in 20 years of ABC/Post polls. More than twice as many of Trump’s supporters are highly enthusiastic about supporting him, 53%,” the report continues. “Trump’s still-strong rating on the economy is another challenge for Biden. So is this: Among Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents who prefer Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders for the nomination, 15% say they’d back Trump over Biden in the fall.”
That last sentence alone could spell doom for any chance that Biden might have of winning the election. Democrats need to improve on their 2016 turnout, not go backwards. If 15% of Bernie’s voters stay home, that puts Biden is mortal danger. If they actually go out and vote for President Trump? Goodnight, nurse. Four more years is all but guaranteed.
Of course, Biden is in an even worse position than these numbers can show. While Trump is out there in front of the American people every day, leading us through the coronavirus crisis, Biden is holed up in his house, holding mock press conferences from his living room. And while he did appear on a couple of national television shows over the weekend, the fact is that the pandemic has pretty much stolen all of his spotlight. If his enthusiasm numbers are this bad today, how bad will they be after another month or two of him being virtually erased from the news?