Biden’s Lead In New Hampshire

Simon Rosenberg

New CNN Poll in NH Has Biden Up Over Trump 52-40 – A new, large-sample CNN/University of New Hampshire poll has Biden up over Trump by 12 points, 52-40. For reference, Biden won the state in 2020 by 7 points, and Clinton won it by less than a point in 2016. It’s encouraging news, and another sign of that Democratic overperformance we’ve been seeing across the US since Dobbs. 

It’s also a reminder that in 2022 the election was not nationalized, and that there was a bluer election inside the battleground and a redder election outside. While Democrats lost ground in the national popular vote from 2020, we gained ground in many of the most important battleground states which saw ads and highly contested races – AZ, CO, GA, MI, MN, NH, PA. We got all the way up to 59% in CO, 57% in PA, 55% in MI, 54% in NH. Part of the reason so many commentators got the election wrong last time was due to this lack of nationalization. National polling just wasn’t able to capture these strong Dem gains in the battleground, something that may be happening again this year. 

In my writing I’ve argued that the battleground has gotten much harder for Trump because of our strong showing there last year. It appears to be true in this NH poll – let’s see what other states show in the coming months. Will be interesting to see if national media orgs start doing state by state general election polling given that the Republican primary appears to be largely settled. 

As of right now there are only seven 2024 Presidential battleground states – AZ, GA, MI, NC, NV, PA, WI. It’s possible the map changes as we go deeper into the election but for now this is it. It remains remarkable that in this huge country so few people will experience a full on Presidential campaign. I have long worried that the narrowness of the Presidential map has contributed to the distance many Americans feel to Washington, and to politics more broadly. It’s just not healthy that so few Americans get to really be part of the campaign to pick their President. But here we are, and this NH poll is a great way to end the week.

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