Recent surveys suggest that black voters, the most loyally Democratic voting bloc in the country, may see a reduced turnout in 2024 that could cost Joe Biden his re-election bid.
As reported by the Washington Free Beacon, a recent poll by the New York Times shows President Donald Trump and Biden in a dead heat, at 43 percent each; the close race is attributed to Trump making “gains among black, Hispanic, male and low-income voters.”
Pew Research shows a total black population of 42.7 million people, which makes up roughly 14.2 percent of the overall U.S. population; this represents a 30 percent increase from the year 2000. The average age of the black population is around 33, five years younger than the average age of the rest of the population.
An analysis by the Washington Post shows that black turnout has dropped in recent years. Whereas black turnout in the 2018 midterms was around 51.7 percent, the turnout in 2022 was down nearly ten points, at 42 percent. In the same period of time, turnout among White voters dropped by a mere 1.5 points, to 53.4 percent.
“Black voter turnout was down across the country in 2022. We saw it in the polls, the surveys, the exit polls and every way you could measure it,” said Michael McDonald, politics professor at the University of Florida.
In addition, a report by HIT strategies shows that a noticeably larger number of black voters are choosing Republicans than past generations. In 2022, one out of every five black voters under the age of 50 voted for a GOP candidate, which was nearly double the amount of black Republican voters in past generations. In 2020, President Trump received 12 percent of the black vote, which was a 4-point increase from his total in 2016.
A new poll from Reuters shows that as many as 18 percent of black voters would vote for President Trump in a rematch with Biden in 2024, which would mark the highest percentage of the black vote for any Republican candidate in modern history.
The reasons for the apparent shift in black voters’ loyalties have varied, from economic struggles under Biden’s policies to a perception that the Democratic Party isn’t doing enough for black voters.
“When you get to economic issues – economic security, inflation, job security – those 50 and 60 point gaps began to shrink to near parity, where you have young black folks saying that Republicans are almost as good for them on the economy as Democrats are,” said Terrance Woodbury, the CEO of HIT Strategies.
Meanwhile, Andre Russell, a 47-year-old black voter in Chicago, said that he feels “kind of stuck with Biden until someone else comes along. As a society we definitely have to move past the trope of old White men running everything.”