Just a week after telling a couple hundred Republican donors, “We have to do it,” former President Donald Trump hinted again at a White House challenge in 2024 during in a campaign-style rally in South Carolina on Saturday.
“We may have to run,” Trump told told the cheering crowd. As he did last week in New Orleans and in previous appearances, the former president said Republicans in 2024 “are going to take back that beautiful, beautiful White House. I wonder who will do that. I wonder. I wonder.”
Trump’s comments came a day after The Wall Street Journal released a poll, of 1,500 registered voters, which showed him deadlocked with President Joe Biden in a hypothetical rematch of 2020 s contest.
Even though Biden’s approval overall rating may have seen a bounce since his State of the Union address earlier this month — with pollsters citing broad support for his tough sanctions on Russia over President Vladimir Putin’s unprovoked attack on Ukraine — the Democrat remains tied with Trump, 45% to 45%, when voters were asked who they’d vote for in the next presidential election.
About 57% of respondents said they were unhappy with Biden’s overall performance, compared to 42% approving — figures similar to the Journal’s last poll in November.
The Journal noted, however, that Trump remains unpopular: a majority, 55% of respondents, held unfavorable views of him. About 15% of voters view both men unfavorably, but those voters back Biden 36% to 24% in a potential 2024 race, the Journal reported.
In addition to signaling he’d throw his hat in the ring in 2024, Trump suggested Saturday that Republicans would triumph in midterm elections, projecting a slate of wins for so-called “America-first” GOP governors and lawmakers.
The Journal poll showed 42% of respondents said they were likely to vote for Republican candidates this November, compared to 29% for Democrats.
Biden has faced declining approval ratings since notching several strong polls shortly after taking office in 2021.
His handling of the COVID-19 pandemic — initially seen as a strong point as vaccinations ramped up — Afghanistan withdrawal and rising inflation are often cited by pollsters as leading concerns among voters.
The White House counters by pointing to millions of jobs gained over the last year and Biden’s signature of a bipartisan infrastructure package, a bill that should see at least $9 billion go toward Massachusetts projects.
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