2 new post-debate polls have bad news for Biden

Two new polls taken after President Joe Biden’s disastrous debate with Donald Trump offer discouraging news for Democrats.

A Suffolk University/USA TODAY poll published Tuesday found Trump beating Biden by 3 percent in a six-candidate presidential ballot — a post-debate shift from a survey a month earlier that had the two candidates tied.

Another poll conducted for CNN by SSRS similarly found Trump holding a 6 percentage point lead over the president, unchanged from an earlier survey, but also this: Fifty-six percent of Democrats and Democratic-leaning registered voters said their party has a better shot at winning with a candidate other than Biden.

The new polls come as questions mount about Biden’s ability to take on Trump, with an increasing number of Democrats publicly calling for him to step aside following a debate in which he seemed at times to struggle to respond to his opponent’s barrage of verbal attacks.

The Biden campaign said in an email that other polls, including internal ones, found the president tied or ahead of Trump after the debate. It also noted that media coverage of President Barack Obama’s 2012 debate drove “a large, but temporary, drop in his polling.”

Just over three-quarters of voters in the new CNN poll think Trump performed better at the presidential debate, compared to 23 percent for Biden.

Voters in the USA TODAY poll also saw Trump as the clear victor of the debate with 50 percent indicating the former president won compared to 11 percent for Biden. Twenty-eight percent say neither candidate.

Yet, 44 percent of those who watched the presidential debate say the debate didn’t influence their decision about who to vote for, according to the USA TODAY poll. Roughly a third say it made them more likely to vote for Trump while 10 percent say it tipped them toward Biden.

An overwhelming portion of voters overall — 75 percent — say the Democrats have a better chance at winning the presidency in 2024 with someone other than Biden as the party’s nominee, per CNN’s poll.

Amid speculation about who might replace Biden should he decide to step aside, CNN’s poll tested how well a series of Democratic Party alternatives would fare against Trump. Only Vice President Kamala Harris performed better than Biden at 45 percent, while California Gov. Gavin Newsom and U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg performed the same as Biden at 43 percent.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who has dismissed POLITICO’s reporting that she said her state was “no longer winnable” for Biden, fared worse against Trump than Biden with 42 percent.

The CNN poll was conducted June 28-30, surveying 1,045 registered voters with a margin of error of plus or minus 3.7 percentage points. The USA TODAY poll was conducted June 28-30, surveying 1,000 registered voters with a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.

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