Marianne Williamson Makes Gains Against Joe Biden, New Poll Shows
Democratic presidential candidate Marianne Williamson could make gains against President Joe Biden ahead of the 2024 election, according to a new poll.
Williamson, an author and political activist, officially announced her presidential campaign in early March, making her the only officially declared Democrat seeking the party’s nomination in 2024. While Biden is seen as the frontrunner and has repeatedly expressed his intention to seek a second term, the president has not officially announced another candidacy for the White House.
Widely considered a longtime candidate, an early March poll showed Williamson in low single-digit support against Biden. Notably, the progressive political activist had previously sought the Democratic nomination in 2020, along with more than 20 others, but gave up before the Iowa caucuses. She did, however, gain notable national visibility and remained a prominent figure in progressive political circles.
After nearly a month of campaigning, a new poll by Echelon Insights shows Williamson is backed by a double-digit percentage of likely voters in the Democratic primaries. The survey, which was conducted March 27-29, showed the longtime candidate with 10% of likely Democratic voters saying they would “probably” or “definitely” support her, compared to 73% who backed Biden. The margin of error was plus or minus 3.8%.
While the data shows a huge advantage for the incumbent president, the results were significantly better for Williamson compared to a previous Morning Consult poll conducted March 3-5. In this survey, the author received only 4% support and Biden garnered 77%. The poll’s margin of error was plus or minus 3%.
The headline of the Morning Consult poll was: “Biden leads Williamson by 73 points among Democratic primary voters.” If the new Echelon Insights poll is accurate, it shows Biden’s lead is now 10 points lower, at 63%.
Williamson said in comments emailed to Newsweek Saturday that she is “grateful that our message is reaching people.”
“A season of repair and a fresh start in America is possible, but not if we continue to elect status quo politicians determined to perpetuate the system as it is.
If we want universal health care, free college education, a guaranteed living wage, and other similar policies granted to citizens of all other advanced democracies; if we want to save the planet for our children and grandchildren; so we have to change direction now,” she said.
The progressive Democrat added: “We need to get back to government ‘of the people, by the people and for the people’ – not ‘of the companies, by the companies and for the companies’.”
Newsweek contacted the White House by email for comment.
However, it’s still early days, with the first Democratic primaries not taking place until early next year, and the polling data only represents a preliminary glimpse of how voters think.
But polls have consistently shown the president has a low approval rating. Polls also show an appetite among Democratic voters for an alternative candidate. Fox News polling data released Wednesday showed a majority (52%) of Democratic primary voters would prefer someone other than Biden as their 2024 nominee.
In particular, Biden has come under fire from many progressives, frustrated with his relatively moderate political stances. Progressives want Democrats to push forward a significantly stronger agenda when it comes to tackling climate change and economic equality. Some progressives believe Biden has betrayed the commitments he made in his 2020 campaign because he has often compromised significantly with Democrats and moderate Republicans to pass legislation.
For her part, Williamson said Newsweek in a March interview that she’s not “too worried at this point about the polling data.” She expressed optimism that her message will be received by voters, noting that she thinks Americans “have a deeper understanding of the fundamental flaws of modern capitalism.”
“I think people understand better than they did four years ago that the government too often supports this amoral bottom line,” the Democratic candidate said.
Positioning herself as an outside candidate, Williamson believes her lack of experience in Washington, DC sets her apart from establishment politicians. “Too many people in DC lack the courage or moral courage to change our system. Let me in. I will,” she posted on Twitter Saturday morning.