The U.S. Presidential Debate: Joe Biden and Donald Trump

June 28, 2024

On June 27, 2024, Joe Biden and Donald had their first presidential debate. We surveyed Americans to learn more about their opinions regarding the debate, its viewership, and how they felt the candidates performed in the debate from June 27 to 28, 2024.

Some of the key highlights of our survey about the presidential debate include…

Expectations for Democrat nominee Joe Biden may have been low going into the first presidential debate; however, the results appear worse than expected.

  • Americans feel Donald Trump won the debate over Biden by a 4 to 1 margin (49% to 17%).
  • Republican voters are almost unanimous that Trump won (93%), in contrast to Democrat supporters, whose majority don’t select their candidate as the winner—45% say no one won, and 6% are unsure. Only four out of ten Democrat voters (40%) say Joe Biden won the debate.
  • There was also a pronounced gender split in terms of impressions of who won the debate: 57% of men say Trump won versus 40% of women. Interestingly, women were not of the view that Biden won (16%).

The impact of last night’s debate and Biden’s poor showing has resulted in the largest Trump lead in the presidential race in our polling to date.

  • Among decided voters, 50% say they would support Donald Trump and 42% would support Joe Biden—an 8-point spread.
  • In the presidential race among female voters, Trump only trails Biden by 2 points after his debate performance (44%-46%).

Viewership of the first presidential debate was strong, with over one-third of Americans watching it all (37%) and another 22% watching at least some of it.

  • Overall impressions of the debate were split, with 49% saying it was bad debate and 42% saying it was a good debate. Democrat voters were more likely to say it was a bad debate (64%).

Methodology

This web survey about the presidential debate in the U.S. was conducted from June 27 to June 28, 2024, with 1,001 Americans aged 18 or older. Out of those, 629 watched the debate. 

A margin of error cannot be associated with a non-probability sample in a panel survey. For comparison purposes, a probability sample of this size yields a margin of error no greater than ±3.09%, (19 times out of 20).

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