The Democrats impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump may just be starting, but it’s already damaged the 2020 ambitions of one high profile political figure—Joe Biden.
When the impeachment frenzy began in September, the former vice president was still leading his Democrat rivals by solid margins, according to national and state polls. Weeks of revelations about influence peddling in the Obama-era State Department and the conflicts of interest between the former vice president’s office and the business interests of his youngest son, Hunter, however, have taken their toll.
This was first evidenced by the Biden campaign’s fundraising troubles and has more recently been exhibited by the former vice president’s slippage in the polls.
Since starting this campaign in late-April, Biden has dropped from leading his fellow 2020 Democrats by as much as double digits in Iowa, New Hampshire, and Nevada. A poll released from Iowa in late-October showed the former vice president in fourth place, trailing not only Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Warren (D-MA), but also South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg. Since that time, two other polls have also shown Biden firmly in fourth place, according to polling data compiled by Real Clear Politics.
A similar situation has played out in New Hampshire, where Biden once led by more than 15 percentage points, the former vice president has been eclipsed by neighboring state rival, Warren. In fact, Biden had not led Warren in the first primary state in any poll taken between mid-September and November. That trend was only broken on Monday when a Quinnipiac Poll found the former vice president with a four percentage point advantage over Warren in New Hampshire. Although Biden’s campaign was quick to laud the poll as proof their campaign was rebounding, they failed to mention that the former vice president’s lead was exactly within the margin of error.
Biden has also faltered nationally in the race for the Democrat nomination, although to less of a degree. In the weeks after Biden first announced his campaign, he led the field by as much as 32 percentage points. In comparison, a Quinnipiac Poll from October found the former vice president trailing Warren, 21 percent to 28 percent, respectively. A similar Quinnipiac Poll taken just before the most recent Democrat presidential primary, which most pundits agreed was not Biden’s best performance, had seen Warren leading the former vice president more narrowly, 30 percent to 27 percent.
Several national polls from the past week continue to show Biden in decline. A Monmouth University poll conducted between October 30 and November 3, found the former vice president in a statistical tie with Warren, with both Democrats pulling 23 percent of the vote. Likewise, a poll conducted by The Economist and YouGov between November 3 through November 5 showed Biden with narrow one point advantage, well within the margin of error, over Warren.