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Poll: RFK Jr. stealing votes from Trump, Biden

By CM Chaney · November 2, 2023

In brief…

  • Recent poll shows Kennedy with 22% support in 3-way presidential race
  • Kennedy polling better among young voters aged 18-34
  • Analysis shows Kennedy drawing new donors, more from Trump camp
  • Quinnipiac poll suggests Kennedy's independent bid has appeal for Americans wary of Trump or Biden
A new Quinnipiac poll finds Robert F. Kennedy Jr. polling at 22 percent in a three-way presidential race and drawing disproportionate support from younger voters and past Trump donors in his independent bid.  Gage Skidmore / Wikimedia

A recent Quinnipiac University poll shows independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. gaining traction, earning 22 percent support in a hypothetical three-way race against President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump.

According to the survey results, Biden would take 39 percent of the vote, and Trump would come away with 36 percent.

The poll suggests that Kennedy is pulling more support from Trump than Biden, matching earlier polling by Kennedy’s Super PAC.

In a head-to-head between Biden and Trump, the Quinnipiac poll projects a near dead heat: 47 percent of registered voters would support the Democratic incumbent over his Republican predecessor’s 46 percent.

Kennedy proved popular among young voters aged 18-34, with 38 percent choosing him compared to 32 percent for Biden and 27 percent for Trump.

“In a warning sign for Democrats, Kennedy was the leading choice for young voters, aged 18-34, in the poll’s surveyed population,” Politico’s Andrew Zhang wrote.

After losing the chance to compete in the Democratic primary, Kennedy declared an independent presidential bid last month.

Kennedy did not have a realistic path to victory in the Democratic primary since the national Democratic Party had already pledged support for Biden’s reelection campaign. Additionally, Kennedy’s doubts about vaccine effectiveness angered a sizable segment of the Democratic Party he formerly belonged to.

This poll hints that Kennedy’s independent presidential campaign could draw considerable interest from Americans who are uneasy about the prospect of either Trump or Biden being elected again.

Analysis shows Kennedy has drawn donors who did not contribute to the last two presidential elections, more often from Trump supporters than Biden supporters.

The Quinnipiac poll surveyed 1,610 registered voters by phone from October 26-30 and has a margin of error of +/- 2.4 percentage points.