November’s Presidential Election May 2024

NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist National Poll

Biden and Trump Locked in Tight Race Nationally...West & Stein, Not RFK, Make Difference in Multi-Candidate Field

President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump are closely matched in November’s presidential election among registered voters nationally, including those who are undecided yet leaning toward a candidate. However, Trump has closed the gap against Biden among those who say they definitely plan to vote in November. In a multi-candidate field that includes Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Cornel West, and Jill Stein, Trump now edges Biden. Stein and West make the difference, pulling support from Biden and not Trump.

2024 Presidential Election
If November's general election for president were held today, whom would you support if the candidates are: [If undecided: If you had to decide today, are you leaning more towards]:
Source: NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist Poll National Registered Voters. Interviews conducted May 21st through May 23rd, 2024, n=1,122 MOE +/- 3.7 percentage points. Totals may not add to 100% due to rounding.
  • Two points separate Biden (50%) and Trump (48%) among registered voters nationally in the presidential contest. Support for Biden and Trump is unchanged from early May. Among those who say they will definitely vote, Biden receives 50% to 49% for Trump. Biden (52%) was previously +5 percentage points against Trump (47%) among these voters.

  • Trump (54%) leads Biden (42%) among independent voters. However, Biden (49%) and Trump (47%) are closely matched among those who have an unfavorable opinion of both candidates.

  • Trump (44%) edges Biden (40%) among registered voters in a multi-candidate field. Kennedy has the support of 8% to 3% for Stein and 2% for West. Earlier this month, Biden (42%) and Trump (42%) were tied, with Kennedy receiving 11%, Stein garnering 2%, and West receiving 2%.

  • Kennedy pulls support evenly from both Biden and Trump. However, among Biden supporters from a Biden-Trump matchup, Stein receives 5%, and West receives 4% in this multi-candidate contest. Stein and West do not pull any measurable support from former President Trump.

  • Most registered voters nationally (90%) say they plan to vote for president in November. Seven percent say they will vote but will skip the line for president. Three percent are not likely to vote. Biden supporters (7%) are slightly more likely than Trump supporters (5%) to say they will skip the presidential line. Non-white voters (11%) are more than twice as likely as white voters (5%) to pass on voting for president. Voters under the age of 45 (12%) are three times as likely as older voters (4%) to do the same.

"Despite Biden’s campaign appearances and Trump’s court appearances, the contest for president has been and remains tight," says Lee M. Miringoff, Director of the Marist Institute for Public Opinion. "When it comes to this rematch, it’s as if voters are saying, 'tell me something about Biden and Trump, I don’t already know.'"

Could “Hush Money” Verdict Impact Electorate?

While 67% of registered voters nationally say it makes no difference to their vote if Trump is found guilty in his “hush money” trial, 17% report they would be less likely to vote for him if he is convicted. 15% would be more likely to vote for Trump.

Conversely, 76% of voters say a not guilty verdict would not impact their vote. Nine percent would be less likely to vote for Trump, and 14% would me more likely to vote for him.

Trump (Still) Bests Haley

85% of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents say, if they could choose a Republican nominee for president now, they would back Trump. 14% would support Nikki Haley. Regardless of demographic group, Trump outpaces Haley with at least 74% of the Republican electorate.

Biden and Trump’s Favorable Ratings Remain Underwater

42% of Americans have a favorable impression of Biden, and 52% have an unfavorable view of him. This is little changed from early May, when Biden received a 40% positive score and a 54% negative rating.

Trump experiences similar ratings. 41% have a favorable opinion of Trump, and 54% have an unfavorable impression of the former president. Trump also experiences little movement in his rating since last time. In early May, Trump’s favorable rating was 39% and 56% of Americans had an unfavorable impression of him.

Biden’s Approval Rating Status Quo

Biden’s job approval rating has not moved since early May. 41% of Americans approve of the job Biden is doing in office, and 54% disapprove. Six percent are unsure. 22% of Americans strongly approve of how Biden is doing in office, and 42% strongly disapprove.

Two-Thirds Solid in Their Choice for President

About two in three registered voters (66%) say they know for whom they plan to vote, and nothing will change their mind. 68% of both Biden and Trump supporters are firm in their commitment to their candidate. 25% of voters think they have a good idea of the candidate they will support but could change their mind. Seven percent have not yet made up their mind. An even greater proportion of those who say they definitely plan to vote in November (73%) say they are certain for whom they plan to vote.

Americans are Plugged into Presidential Contest

More than three in four Americans (76%), including 81% of registered voters, say they are following the presidential contest either very closely or closely. 24% of Americans are not following it very closely or not following it at all. Biden’s supporters (85%) are tracking the presidential contest more closely than Trump’s supporters this election cycle (79%).

Eight percent of registered voters say this year’s election will be their first-time voting.

Congressional Ballot a Tossup

45% of registered voters nationally say they are more likely to vote for the Democratic congressional candidate in their district. The same proportion (45%) report they are more likely to vote for the Republican on the ballot. Two percent expect to vote for another candidate, and 8% are unsure. When last reported in November of 2022, the electorate was similarly divided (46% for the Democratic candidate and 46% for the Republican).

Nearly Half of Americans Want U.S. to be Intermediary in the War Between Israel and Hamas

Close to half of Americans (48%) think the U.S. should support Israel’s right to defend itself against Hamas but should also use its influence to encourage Israel to protect Palestinian civilians. 25% of U.S. residents think the U.S. should stop all support to Israel until there is a ceasefire in Gaza, and 23% say the U.S. should fully support all of Israel’s military actions against Hamas.

U.S. Military Aid to Israel?

Nearly four in ten Americans (38%) think the United States is giving Israel the right amount of military aid. 35% believe too much military support is being provided while 23% think the U.S. is not giving enough military aid to Israel. Four percent are unsure.

U.S. Humanitarian Aid to the Palestinians?

Nearly four in ten Americans (36%) say the United States is providing the right amount of humanitarian aid to the Palestinians. 29% think the aid given is too much, and the same proportion (29%) say it is not enough.

Nearly Half of Americans Think the Environment Tops Economic Growth

49% of Americans think protection of the environment should be given priority even if it risks curbing economic growth. 42% believe economic growth should be the priority even if it means the environment will suffer. Four percent say the two issues are equal in priority, and 4% are unsure. Democrats (68%) are more likely than Republicans (27%) and independents (48%) to prioritize the environment over the economy.

Plurality of Americans Considers Climate Change Top Priority

Four in ten Americans think climate change is a top priority. An additional 38% say the issue is important but not a top priority. 21% believe climate change is not a priority at all. Democrats (67%) are nearly twice as likely as independents (36%) and more than four times as likely as Republicans (14%) to consider climate change a top priority.