There is always a good reason to serve and re-serve Serge Gainsbourg. This American presidential election lends itself to it majestically. Donald Trump takes pleasure in provocation. Its management of the pandemic is turning a little more scandalous every day. And to hear the Americans, there is a little something repellent about each of the candidates.
Americans are not spoiled. A large poll unveiled this week by the Gallup firm told us that they have an unfavorable opinion of each of the presidential candidates. Joe Biden is doing a little better than Donald Trump, but the incumbent president appears so polarizing that one would have expected his Democratic rival to stand out more.
Such an imbalance is rare, but our neighbors to the South are hitting a two-in-two: it was, in 2016, the first time in nearly thirty years that the candidates for the White House have garnered more unfavorable than favorable opinions. For a large majority of Democrats, Trump was just a vulgar figure, and just as many Republicans found Hillary Clinton undrinkable.
What is puzzling this time around is that Donald Trump – after three years and eight months of an improvised, chaotic and tumultuous presidency – is perceived more positively than at such a date in 2016. He can capitalize, it must be said, on an alignment of Republican voters, an alignment that turns to devotion with an approval of 93%!
THE RBG EFFECT
Which brings us to the impact of the death of United States Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Remarkable woman, idol of progressives, President Trump's appointment of a much more conservative replacement will powerfully energize both camps.
Except that the Democrats, horrified on a daily basis by this president, have already filled up with anti-Trump rage and energy. Conversely, some Republicans, possibly tired by years of turmoil at the top of the state, were reluctant to engage fully in this campaign. Don't doubt it, the idea of anchoring the highest court in the land firmly to the right will give them the necessary boost.
It is too early, however, to fully determine the influence that the death of Judge Ginsburg will have on the presidential election, but also on these parallel elections, of which a third of the seats at stake in the Senate.
AN “BOF” ELECTION
It's a sign of faltering confidence in the Democratic campaign that the mere appeal of Joe Biden is not enough to secure his victory over a president battered by a pandemic and economic crisis.
One would have expected, less than 45 days before the vote, a result comparable in the polls to what Barack Obama recorded in 2008. I was already living in Washington at the time and we were leaving the very unpopular presidency of George W. Bush. Not much different, in a way, from what we know now.
Republican John McCain could not oppose anything inspiring enough to Obama's exceptional charisma. The “favorability” rating of the young Democratic candidate had reached a high of 63%, which he maintained until the eve of the presidential election.
Donald Trump is not John McCain, that's clear. Joe Biden is even less Barack Obama, it is obvious.
What do you think of the presidential candidates ?
| Donald trump
| Joe biden
* Other voters polled had no opinion (Source: Gallup, Aug 31-Sep 13, 2020)
Rate of “favorability” of presidential candidates (August / September)
- Donald Trump 33%
- Hillary Clinton 38%
- Barack Obama 53%
- Mitt Romney 48%
- Barack Obama 63%
- John McCain 59%
- George W. Bush 54%
- John Kerry 52%
- George W. Bush 60%
- Al Gore 64%