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ANALYSIS: Biden Is Bleeding, And The Sharks Are Circling

NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP via Getty Images

Sarah Weaver Staff Writer
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A New York Times/Siena College poll of registered voters released Monday found that 61% of Democrats think the party should nominate another candidate, not Joe Biden, for the presidency in 2024. Only 29% thought Biden should be the 2024 nominee.

The NYT poll isn’t the first time the president’s popularity within his own party’s voters has been called into question. A June Fox News poll showed that 18% of registered Democrat voters disapproved of Biden’s job as president, the highest number since he took office two years ago.

In Washington, Democrats are preparing, even hoping, for a post-Biden 2024 election. For many Democratic operatives and politicians, the 79-year-old served his purpose already—that is, if they even agree he accomplished that at all.

“Both polls appear to be the first of the 21st century to show more supporters of a president’s party opting for nominating a hypothetical someone else,” The Washington Post reported, referring to the NYT poll and a NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll.

Biden is caught between the progressive wing of his party, whom he endeavored to placate heading into the 2020 election, and the moderate wing who claims he has capitulated too much to the far-left. (RELATED: Jean-Pierre Responds To Poll Finding Majority Of Democrats Prefer Different Presidential Candidate In 2024)

“You’ll probably see moderates … cold shouldering Biden and progressives pushing him to do more,” Connor Farrell, a strategist and founder of the progressive consultancy Left Rising told The Hill.

“Democrats are angry, frustrated, dissatisfied and dispirited,” Jon Reinish, managing director at the political strategy firm Mercury, also told the outlet.

Democratic Virginia Rep. Abigail Spanberger — a moderate within her party — gave a speech in July in which she failed to mention the president even once. And Democratic Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan, a close personal friend of Biden’s, didn’t show up to an event Biden threw in Cleveland.

But in the wake of the the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade in the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Center decision, many Democrats are frustrated with the White House’s inaction on the abortion issue.

“Frustration, anger rising among Democrats over caution on abortion,” read a Washington Post headline days after the decision. (RELATED: POLL: Even Democrats Think The Country Is Going In The Wrong Direction)

Democratic Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren claimed that the federal government should respond to the Dobbs decision by building abortion clinics on federal land, a proposal which the White House later dismissed. There are a number of legal reasons why the proposal is impossible to implement, but the incident served to highlight the frustration with Biden’s more measured response to what many in his party see as nothing less than an emergency.

“There is a leadership vacuum right now, and he’s not filling it,” Democratic consultant Adam Jentleson said, according to the Washington Post. “But in moments of crisis, the president is called upon to be a leader. And when people are feeling scared and angry and outraged, they look to him for that, and they’re not getting much.”

“He has to be more forceful in defending the Democratic Party and what the Democratic Party stands for,” Sam Baydoun, a county commissioner in Wayne County, Michigan, said, according to the outlet.

One of the more prominent members of the left-wing activist cohort of Congressional Democrats, New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, directly criticized the president’s response to the Dobbs decision on NBC’s Meet the Press.

“What I believe that the president and the Democratic Party needs to come to terms with is that this is not just a crisis of Roe, this is a crisis of our democracy,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “This is a crisis of legitimacy, and President Biden must address that.”

Biden is not only battling abysmal polling numbers among voters at large, but now his own party is turning against him. It appears that for a Democrat to be seen as too friendly with Biden is a dangerous electoral strategy. The president is making enemies with both the left-wing and the more moderate factions of his party.

In the 2022 midterms, analyzing how many successful Democratic candidates seriously associated with the president and his agenda may serve as a verdict on the general success of Biden’s presidency. Then, coming up on the 2024 presidential election, the question will be whether Biden can scrap together enough support within his own party to be chosen again as the nominee.