President Biden and former President Donald Trump secured their parties‘ 2024 nominations with recent primary victories, sparking mixed emotions across the nation.

According to a Yahoo News/YouGov poll of 1,636 U.S. adults conducted from March 8-11, the prevailing sentiment toward a Biden-Trump rematch is predominantly one of “dread,” with 40% of respondents expressing this negative emotion. Additionally, feelings of exhaustion (29%) and depression (21%) also feature prominently, while delight lags behind at 8%.

Despite the predominance of negative sentiments, there’s a notable shift in the air. Compared to September 2023, there’s a decrease in exhaustion (from 34% to 29%), coupled with increases in excitement (from 15% to 19%) and particularly in optimism (from 25% to 31%), which now ranks as the second most-selected emotion.

This uptick in positive sentiment isn’t confined to a single political aisle. Both Democrats and Republicans are showing signs of increased optimism and excitement. Democrats, for instance, are 8 points more likely to express optimism (37% vs. 29%) and 7 points more likely to feel excited (23% vs. 16%) compared to September. Similarly, Republicans are 6 points more optimistic (41% vs. 35%) and 7 points more excited (28% vs. 21%).

Interestingly, optimism now reigns supreme among Republicans, a shift from September when it was tied with dread. This could be attributed to Republicans’ contentment with their nominee, Trump, and their belief in his electoral prospects. A significant majority of Republican-leaning voters (74%) prefer Trump as the nominee, compared to Democrats’ preference for Biden (56%). Moreover, while 65% of Democrats believe Biden has the best chance of winning in November, a larger share of Republicans (85%) view Trump as the favorite.

Overall, while dread still looms large over the 2024 election, growing optimism suggests a changing outlook among Americans as they navigate the political landscape.



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