News and Commentary

New Data Finds Biden’s Lead Shrinking Significantly, Trump Within Striking Range
U.S. Senator Joseph Biden (D-DE) reacts as he speaks on U.S. policy in Iraq at the Brookings Institution June 21, 2005 in Washington, DC.
Alex Wong/Getty Images

One new poll and another survey find that the lead that former Vice President Joe Biden has held over President Trump has significantly shrunk recently.

The Hill-HarrisX poll surveying respondents between August 2-5 found Biden garnering 47% of the national vote versus 43% for Trump, a lead of four percentage points. The previous Hill-HarrisX poll, conducted between July 17-20, found Biden with 45% of the vote and Trump with 38%.

In the latest Hill-HarrisX poll, 9% of respondents said they had not decided yet, 5% of respondents said they wanted another alternative, and 3% said they had no intention of voting, The Hill reported.

Two key demographics surged for Trump: Midwestern voters voting for Trump rose from 38% to 42% while that same group plummeted for Biden from 45% to 39%. Independents also surged for Trump from 31% to 35% while Biden fell behind at 33%.

Trump has been climbing steadily in the Hill-HarrisX poll. At the beginning of June, Biden led Trump by 10 points; 47% of respondents chose Biden while 37% chose Trump. At the time, Terrance Woodbury, Democratic pollster and founding partner at Hit Strategies, pointed out to Hill.TV that numbers showed 24% of black voters approving of Trump. He stated, “I’ll tell you right now, if he can get half of those 24 percent of people to vote for him, then he is reelected.”

CNN reported in late July:

If the race for president tightens, Trump’s small gain with Black voters could make a difference. It could cost Biden 0.5 points nationally on the whole compared to where Clinton ended up. That may not seem like a lot, though it could make the difference in a close election. And, of course, Biden’s margin with Black voters may tighten further if the margin with other voters also shifts. Historically, Trump is doing as well and probably even a touch better than Republicans normally do among Black voters.

Writing of the vote in Pennsylvania, a key swing state in the presidential election where Trump eked out a victory over Hillary Clinton in 2016, Monmouth University noted:

Most registered voters (54%) say they were surprised in 2016 when Trump ended up winning Pennsylvania’s electoral votes. They are evenly divided on whether they expect Trump (46%) or Biden (45%) to win the commonwealth this time around. One reason for this seems to be that most voters (57%) believe there are a number of so-called secret voters in their communities who support Trump but won’t tell anyone about it.

The three-point margin between Biden and Trump that the Hill-HarrisX poll found accords well with findings from Rasmussen Reports, which stated on Wednesday:

Likely Democratic nominee Joe Biden still holds a slight lead over President Trump in the latest Rasmussen Reports’ weekly White House Watch survey. The new national telephone and online survey finds Biden with 48% support among Likely U.S. Voters to Trump’s 45%. Three percent (3%) prefer some other candidate, while another three percent (3%) remain undecided. A week ago, Biden had a 48% to 42% advantage.

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