The next elections to choose the fiftieth president of the United States is going to be held on 3 November. The latest polls indicate that the gap between two Republican and Democrat candidates Donald Trump and Joe Biden is shortening on a daily basis, putting the latter on the lead.
Trump, as the sitting president, is in the defensive posture as his performance and responsibility are clear while Biden is attacking. That’s why Biden is leading in the opinion polls. Biden’s personal capabilities and the perception of him as the vice president during Obama tenure are to be considered as other important factors of his success in opinion polls so far.
Donald Trump was like an unpicked watermelon in the 2016 elections. There was little knowledge of his performance and aspirations. However, today Americans are well aware of his performance and votes can judge him according to his performance. Let’s not forget the present circumstances in which the outbreak of the corona pandemic has imposed economic damages all in favour of Biden and against the incumbent president. From this viewpoint, Joe Biden can enjoy a better position in opinion polls as Trump has failed so far to present a reliable and feasible plan to avert the negative consequences of Covid-19.
However, we should not be that much optimistic about the outcome of the polls in the 2020 US presidential elections as previous polls proved the opposite and may occur again; in 2016, Hillary Clinton was leading the polls, securing the votes of Latin Americans, African Americans, minorities and large sections of women. However, Clinton’s lead was stopped as election day arrived. This trend is happening again now. Biden was on the lead two months ago with a big gap; however, the difference is gradually shortening and has reached about three to four per cent.
Two presidential debates between Trump and Biden and two other TV debates between their vice-presidential nominees will be very influencing and determining because, after the debates, only one candidate can prove whether or not he possesses the capability to run the country as president. And this is very important on the gray votes of Americans.
Although about 70 per cent of Americans have indicated that they have made their decision on who they will vote for, they may change their view after the televised debates. In terms of social support, Democrats have attracted, like the past, the middle class, academics, Latin Americans, Asians, migrants, environment and peace activists, LGBTs and supporters of abortion as well as those impacted by the Trump immigration policies that created a lot of problems for them to enter the United States.
Some Americans who were affected by the Covid-19 and lost their loved ones as well as jobs blame Trump and his administration and will most probably vote for Biden. Notwithstanding, election debates will be the bargaining chip of US elections and will give us a better view of who is going to be the next US president.
In the meantime, during the period–about 30 days–left to US elections, some unprecedented factors may influence the result of the elections. For example, in 2016 elections and less than a week to the voting day, the then director of FBI James Comey released a report on the emails of Hillary Clinton suggesting she had used private email servers to communicate classified content. Even though it was announced two days later that Clinton had complied with federal laws, it had negative impacts on her election campaign. At the present time, there are some rumours that Joe Biden’s advisers and election campaign officials have access to documents on the alleged Russian influence on 2016 victory of Trump in US elections as well as personal links of Trump with Ukraine and his exploitation of federal law to put pressure on Ukraine president to reveal information about Biden. Such documents have not yet been released. Trump, as the sitting president, has the potential of committing more mistakes than Biden who remains immune against such weakness. Even in the event of an unprecedented incident, it will impact Trump votes rather than Biden’s as Trump is responsible as president.
Trump and his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani may have gathered cases and evidence of financial fraud and corruption by Biden and his son in Ukraine. If this comes true, it can have a negative impact on Biden’s election campaign and the final result of elections.