Joe Biden Faces Enthusiasm Gap on Campaign Trail

US President Joe Biden greets customers at a Sheetz gas station in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvani

Enthusiasm for President Joe Biden on the 2024 campaign trail appears to pale in comparison to the enthusiasm for former President Donald Trump.

Biden stopped at a gas station this week to order food in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Upon entering, few flocked to interact with him. Most patrons stood by, did not hold out their hands, and watched the president walk past.

Biden tried to speak with a girl when he entered the station, but after receiving little interaction, he slowly marched on while cameras followed and onlookers pressed themselves up against the wall. Biden posed for a few photos before he walked to the door.

“I can’t hear you,” Biden said to a person in the room when asked if a tariff policy would hurt his relationship with China. “No,” Biden then replied.

“Why?” the woman asked. “Don’t jump,” Biden quickly answered with a blank face before ducking through the doorway:

Like Biden, former Trump often stops into local establishments. On Tuesday, a throng of people greeted Trump with much fanfare while he visited the Harlem bodega. “Four more years!” chants rang out in the Democrat stronghold of Manhattan. It seemed hundreds of people were trying to catch a glimpse of the former president as he spoke to reporters behind barriers for 15 minutes.

“This is all politics. This is coming out of the White House. And you know, it makes me campaign locally, and that’s okey,” Trump said, referencing his criminal trial:

Political pundits noticed the contrast of enthusiasm between the two candidates. “Biden stopped by a Sheetz gas station today because he wanted to try to replicate Trump’s Harlem bodega, where clerk Jose Alba defended himself while a violent customer attacked him in July 2022. It didn’t work,” Trump supporter Alex Bruesewitz posted on X. “No one cheered. No one was excited to see him. Americans absolutely despise this crooked old fool.”

Byron York of the Washington Examiner contributed Biden’s lack of enthusiasm to his job performance.

“People have had a chance to see Joe Biden be the president for three years now, and we’ve talked almost every day about his job approval ratings, which are very, very low,” he told Fox News about the enthusiasm gap on Thursday. “As a matter of fact, if they’re this low, you just can’t win reelection.”

Only about 40 percent of Americans approved of Biden’s job performance, well below the 50 percent threshold that incumbents historically need to win reelection. One in five Democrats disapprove of Biden’s job performance, a recent Harvard/Harris survey found.

A strong majority of voters believe Biden’s America is on the wrong track, as more voters (nine points) look more fondly on Trump’s presidency, a New York Times/Siena poll found last week. Forty-two percent said Trump’s tenure was “mostly good for America,” compared to only 25 percent for Biden.

Wendell Husebo is a political reporter with Breitbart News and a former GOP War Room Analyst. He is the author of Politics of Slave Morality. Follow Wendell on “X” @WendellHusebø or on Truth Social @WendellHusebo.


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