Two familiar faces are dominating the early run-up to the 2024 presidential election, but those faces aren’t exactly energizing the voters.
A new Quinnipiac University poll found that 47% of voters said, as of right now, they would consider a third-party candidate for president.
“With neither President (Joe) Biden nor former President (Donald) Trump knocking it out of the park on favorability, almost half of the country would consider another option,” Tim Malloy, a polling analyst for Quinnipiac, said.
Trump is the presumptive favorite to win the Republican presidential nomination for the third time, getting support from 54% of Republican and Republican-leaning voters.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is a distant second, at 25%, while South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and former Vice President Mike Pence are both polling at 4%. Another 3% said they were undecided, while a field of eight candidates shared the remaining 8% of voters.
Biden has an even stronger hold on his party, getting support from 74% of Democrat and Democrat-leaning voters. Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., garnered 14% and author Marianne Williamson has 7%.
Another 5% said they were undecided, while 1% each said they’d vote for someone else, wouldn’t vote, or refused to answer the question.
The poll surveyed 2,056 adults nationwide between July 13 and July 17, including 1,809 self-identified registered voters. The results, released Wednesday afternoon, have a margin of error of 2.2%.
Biden had a slight edge over Trump, leading the rematch with a 49-44 tally. Respondents did not seem enthusiastic about either candidate, though.
When asked their opinions of each, 57% of voters had an unfavorable view of Trump and 54% said they did not approve of the job Biden has done a little more than halfway through his presidency.
Voters were evenly split, 47-47, on whether they’d consider a theoretical third-party candidate, with 64% of independent voters saying they would.
It would likely be hard for an individual candidate to win over all those voters, but Malloy said the response shows voter frustration.
“No specific name for the candidate, no specific designation for the party, but it is a vivid indication that for many voters, the status quo is a no-go,” he said.
Voters were split on what they see as the biggest issue, with 31% pointing to the economy and 29% saying they’re worried about preserving democracy.
Abortion access and gun control were each the top priority for 7% of voters, while 6% each said immigration, health care, or racial inequality.
Voters also remain dissatisfied with the U.S. Supreme Court, although the 35% approval rating is an improvement from the 29% in the June survey. The survey found 70% of voters think the court is too influenced by politics.
Respondents were split on some of the court’s recent controversial decisions, though. Respondents supported, at 58%, the court’s decision to bar universities from using race as a factor in admissions.
Meanwhile, 70% said businesses should not be allowed to refuse services to customers based on sexual orientation, disagreeing with the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down a Colorado law.
Two issues that seemed to unify voters were Ukraine and climate change. Only 33% of respondents said the U.S. is doing too much to help Ukraine as it continues to fight off a Russian invasion, while 41% think the country is doing enough and 18% want to see more aid.
A strong majority, 64%, said the U.S. has a national interest in supporting Ukraine, but 51% disapprove of Biden’s decision to send cluster munitions as part of that effort.
Meanwhile, a combined 67% of respondents said they are somewhat or very concerned about climate change, including 5% who said it’s their top issue for the 2024 presidential election.
That’s compared with 32% who don’t see climate change as a big concern or are not concerned at all.
“Searing heat, devastating flooding, choking smoke. Americans are enduring a summer of weather-related calamities, with no age group more concerned than the youngest Americans,” Malloy said.
The survey found 60% of respondents think extreme weather in recent years is related to climate change.
A slight majority, 55%, think climate change will have a significant negative impact on the world in their lifetime, but a similar number, 53%, said they are not worried that they or their loved ones will experience that impact directly.