Joe Biden Doubles Lead Over Donald Trump, New Harvard-Harris Poll Suggests

Former Vice President Joe Biden reacts while giving a speech during a campaign event at Tougaloo College in Tougaloo, Mississippi.
Jonathan Bachman / Getty Images

According to the latest Harvard CAPS/Harris poll released on Tuesday by The Hill, the Democratic Party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Joe Biden, has doubled his national lead over President Donald Trump.

In the poll, 56 percent of respondents said they would back Biden if the election was held today, and 44 percent said they would vote for Trump. Last month’s poll showed Biden ahead by only six percentage points, which suggests that Trump has lost ground across the nation.

Trump’s approval rating has dropped by four points. The poll found that 34 percent of voters approve of Trump’s job performance, while 57 percent disapprove.

According to Mark Penn, the polling director for the Harvard CAPS-Harris survey, Trump’s approval ratings have been steadily declining for quite some time.

“After 11 months of improving ratings, Trump in the last month set back to below 50 percent in his handling of the crisis after the Clorox press conference as he pulled back from the daily briefings,” Penn said, referring to daily coronavirus press conferences Trump used to hold.

At one of the conferences, the president appeared to suggest that injecting disinfectant would be an effective way to treat COVID-19. White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany dismissed the controversy, arguing that the media deliberately misinterpreted Trump’s remarks.

“He continues to lag in the national presidential horse race while Biden’s numbers have shown no change up or down,” Penn said, adding that “this race is far from over and both candidates have potentially winning scenarios.”

Other pollings suggest that Biden has indeed pulled ahead. The former vice president appears to have an advantage nationwide and in key battleground states. According to the RealClearPolitics average of polling data, Biden is ahead of Trump by 9.8 percentage points nationwide.

In addition, the Democrat appears to be stronger in the battleground states of Wisconsin, Arizona, and Florida.

Similarly, an EPIC-MRA Michigan poll released last week put Biden 16 points ahead of Trump. The survey also found that 61 percent of Michiganders disapprove of Trump’s job performance. Only 38 percent of respondents said that they approve of the job Trump is doing as president.

In 2016, when he ran against former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Trump won Michigan by a narrow margin.

According to Penn, the nationwide protests over the death of George Floyd and the uptick in the number of COVID-19 cases appear to have hurt Trump and the Republican Party.

“This has been a weak month for President Trump and the Republicans who have not found their footing after the emergence of the George Floyd protests and given the concern about a possible second wave and concern about opening up too fast,” he said.