Poll: 54% of Voters Say They're Not Better Off Than 4 Years Ago, Echoing 1980

A Rasmussen Reports survey finds 54% of likely US voters believe they are not better off than four years ago. The poll also shows Trump leading Biden in five out of six swing states, with Trump's support among Black voters at 20%.

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Aqsa Younas Rana
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Poll: 54% of Voters Say They're Not Better Off Than 4 Years Ago, Echoing 1980

Poll: 54% of Voters Say They're Not Better Off Than 4 Years Ago, Echoing 1980

A new Rasmussen Reports survey finds that 54% of likely U.S. voters believe they are not better off than they were four years ago, a sentiment that echoes the 1980 presidential election and potentially threatens President Joe Biden's re-election chances in 2024. The poll, conducted May 7-9 among 1,087 likely voters, reveals that only 39% say they are better off now compared to four years prior.

Why this matters: This sentiment has significant implications for the 2024 presidential election, as it may influence voter decisions and shape the campaign strategies of both Biden and Trump. Moreover, it could be a harbinger of a larger trend of voter dissatisfaction with the current state of the economy and politics.

The survey's findings are reminiscent of the famous question posed by Ronald Reagan during his 1980 presidential debate with incumbent Jimmy Carter: "Are you better off than you were four years ago?" Reagan's campaign capitalized on widespread voter dissatisfaction with Carter's presidency, propelling him to a landslide victory. The current poll results suggest that Biden may face a similar challenge as he seeks re-election.

The Rasmussen poll also indicates that despite Biden's efforts to rebuild the coalition that elected him in 2020, his support has not significantly increased. The survey shows Trump leading Biden in five out of six swing states. Perhaps most notably, Trump's support among Black voters stands at 20%, the highest level for a Republican presidential candidate in decades. Democratic pollster Geoff Garin cautioned against drawing broad conclusions based on a single poll, stating, "The only consistency in recent public polls is inconsistency. These results need to be weighed against the 30-plus polls that show Biden up and gaining, which is exactly why drawing broad conclusions about the race based on results from one poll is a mistake."

The Rasmussen survey was conducted as Trump faces an ongoing trial on business fraud charges in New York. However, the poll found that only 29% of voters were closely following the trial proceedings. Trump himself dismissed the significance of both candidates' popularity, saying, "You know what I hate? When these guys get on television, they say pundits, you know, the great pundits that never did a thing in their whole lives. You know, we have two very unpopular candidates. We have Biden or we have Trump. These are very unpopular."

As the 2024 presidential campaign continues to unfold, with less than six months until the November 5 election, the Rasmussen poll serves as a stark indicator of the challenges facing both Biden and Trump. While a majority of voters express dissatisfaction with their current circumstances compared to four years ago, it remains to be seen how this sentiment will ultimately shape the electoral landscape and the final outcome of the presidential race.

Key Takeaways

  • 54% of likely US voters say they're not better off than 4 years ago, threatening Biden's re-election.
  • Only 39% of voters believe they're better off now compared to 4 years prior.
  • Trump leads Biden in 5 out of 6 swing states, with 20% support among Black voters.
  • Majority of voters express dissatisfaction with their current circumstances.
  • 2024 presidential election outcome uncertain, with both candidates facing challenges.