Poll: Over One-Third View Tuesday’s Elections as ‘Referendum’ on Biden

US President Joe Biden (L) greets Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe during

Over one-third of voters view Tuesday’s elections in New Jersey and Virginia as a “referendum” on President Joe Biden, a Rasmussen Reports survey released on Election Day revealed.

Rasmussen Reports asked voters how they generally view the New Jersey governor’s race, between incumbent Gov. Phil Murphy (D) and Republican Jack Ciattarelli, and the Virginia governor’s race, between former Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) and Republican challenger Glenn Youngkin. Do they believe the races are “more about local issues or more a referendum on President Biden?”

WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 14: U.S. President Joe Biden meets with a bipartisan group of city and state political leaders, including New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy (L), about his proposed infrastructure plan in the Roosevelt Room at the White House on July 14, 2021 in Washington, DC. Vice President Kamala Harris, Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo and Labor Secretary Martin Walsh also attended the meeting. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

U.S. President Joe Biden meets with a bipartisan group of city and state political leaders, including New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images).

A plurality, 36 percent, said they view the races as a “referendum” on President Biden, while 35 percent said the races are “more about local issues.” Another 30 percent said they are not sure. 

Republicans are more likely than Democrats and independents to view the races as a referendum on the president, as 40 percent expressed those sentiments. One-third of Democrats and 34 percent of independents agreed. However, 38 percent of Democrats believe the races are about local issues, and 32 percent of independents agree. 

Similarly, “four years ago, when Donald Trump was president, 37% of voters saw the Virginia and New Jersey elections as a referendum on Trump,” according to Rasmussen.

The survey, taken October 31 and November 1, 2021, among 1,000 likely voters, has a margin of error of +/- 3 percent. 

Polls in New Jersey close at 8:00 p.m., Eastern, as RealClearPolitics’ Election Day average shows the Democrat incumbent up by 7.8 percentage points.

Virginia’s race has tightened significantly in the final days of the race, with the RCP average showing Youngkin ahead by 1.7 percentage points. The Republican made his final case in a rally in Loudoun, Virginia, Monday night, describing the election as a “defining moment for the future of our commonwealth [and] a defining moment where we get to stand up and say no to this left, liberal, progressive agenda that’s trying to take us over.”

Polls close in Virginia at 7:00 p.m. Eastern.


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