Biden holds 1 point lead over Trump, poll shows

President Joe Biden holds a marginal lead over Donald Trump ahead of the November presidential election, a new poll shows.

President Joe Biden holds a marginal lead over Donald Trump ahead of the November presidential election, a new poll shows. (Brendan McDermid and Elizabeth Frantz, Reuters)

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WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden holds a marginal lead over Donald Trump ahead of the November presidential election as the Republican candidate is mired in a state court fighting charges he falsified business records, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll that closed on Tuesday.

Some 40% of registered voters in the two-day poll said they would vote for Biden, a Democrat, if the election were held today, compared with 39% who picked former President Trump. That one-point lead was down from a 4-point lead Biden had in a Reuters/Ipsos poll conducted April 4-8.

The survey had a roughly three-percentage-point margin of error for registered voters and many voters remain on the fence six months before the Nov. 5 election.

Some 28% of registered voters in the poll said they had not picked a candidate, were leaning toward third-party options or might not vote at all.

The poll found 8% of respondents would pick Robert Kennedy Jr., an anti-vaccine activist running as an independent, if he were on the ballot with Trump and Biden.

While nationwide surveys give important signals on American support for political candidates, just a handful of competitive states typically tilt the balance in the U.S. electoral college, which ultimately decides who wins a presidential election.

Both candidates carry significant liabilities ahead of what is expected to be a close race and the first U.S. presidential election rematch in nearly 70 years.

Trump has spent much of April in a Manhattan courtroom in what is the first of four pending criminal trials against him.

The trial in Manhattan involves accusations Trump covered up a payment to an adult film actress before the 2016 presidential election in exchange for the actress' silence about an alleged sexual encounter she had with Trump.

An earlier Reuters/Ipsos poll also found a firm majority of Americans considered the charges to be serious. Trump has pleaded not guilty to the charges and denies any such encounter.

The other trials involve charges Trump tried to overturn his 2020 election defeat or that he mishandled sensitive documents after leaving the presidency in 2021. Trump has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Biden's liabilities include concerns about his age — 81 — as well as strong criticism from a slice of his Democratic Party over his support of Israel's war on Hamas militants.

The poll, which surveyed adults nationwide, included many ways to measure support for Biden and Trump, 77, and most pointed to a close race.

Trump had a two-percentage-point lead over Biden among all respondents in the poll, but Biden's lead among registered voters was significant because people who are already registered to vote are more likely to do so in November. Only two-thirds of eligible voters turned out in the 2020 presidential election in which Biden defeated Trump.

Trump led Biden among male respondents 41% to 35%, while Biden led among women 35% to 33%. Trump led among respondents without a college degree while Biden led among those who had one.

The Reuters/Ipsos poll included responses from 856 registered voters who were surveyed online nationwide.

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Jason Lange


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