President Joe Biden, UN
President Joe Biden speaking at the opening of the UN General Assembly. Photo credit: norwayUN52 / Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 DEED)

In four swing states, the Democratic Senate candidates are running far ahead of Joe Biden. That should have the president a bit worried.

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At this point in a presidential election cycle, asking voters to choose between the two likely nominees of the major parties is essentially useless. Between now and November a lot can happen to the country, to the candidates (especially a couple of really old dudes… one of whom may be in prison by then), and even the voters themselves.

Instead of inundating viewers with “hate illegals because a few of them commit crimes” coverage, maybe Fox News will shift to “undocumented immigrants pull children out of a burning bus” reports, or even just “without immigrants working crappy jobs, we would have no food or roads” stories. 

Or there will be a nuclear weapon deployed somewhere. 

Or that prison thing.

Or one or both of the candidates totally lose their marbles.

However, absent any of those (or a million other similar) things happening, the current polls showing either Joe Biden or Donald Trump way ahead are almost certainly wrong.

In the end, this election will likely be decided by a few thousand voters in the handful of states that actually matter.

That is why we don’t usually write about polls this early in the race. There really is no point. 

That being said, there is something noteworthy to be found in a poll conducted on behalf of The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and Siena College that was released today.

To figure it out, you have to look beyond the headlines of Trump opening up (partially big) leads in five of six key states.

Once again, that has no relevance at this point (and we would say the exact same thing if Biden were in the lead). 

However, what should have Democrats worried is that the president is running significantly behind their party’s Senate candidates in these states. 

That’s not a good sign for Biden… but it should give Democrats some hope that they can hold the Senate. They can only afford to lose one seat in the upcoming election, and several of their candidates are running in red or swing states.

Their candidates are ahead in Pennsylvania, Nevada, Arizona, and Wisconsin. According to the poll, in these states, Biden is holding a slim lead in only one of them (Wisconsin). In the others, he is either a little bit or far behind. 

The Democratic candidates are running ahead of the president by anywhere from 7 to 14 points. 

Granted, part of the reason for this performance might be that GOP primary voters chose exceptionally bad MAGA candidates that simply do not appeal to the base as much as Trump does.

In addition, three of the Democrats are incumbents, and Rep. Ruben Gallego, who is the party’s candidate in Arizona, is a member of Congress. 

However, these figures should give Democrats reason to worry about the top of their ticket, especially with regard to minority voters. 

The poll shows that Trump is doing much better with them than the Republican Senate candidates at this point. 

Of course, a lot will still happen between now and November, so all of this is subject to major changes.


  • Klaus Marre

    Klaus Marre is a writer, editor, former congressional reporter, and director of the WhoWhatWhy Mentor Apprentice Program. Follow him on Twitter @KlausMarre.

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