Hunter Biden trial isn't changing US voters' minds, Reuters/Ipsos poll finds

Hunter Biden's trial on criminal gun charges continues, in Wilmington

By Jason Lange

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Most U.S. voters followed the criminal trial of President Joe Biden's son Hunter Biden and the vast majority say his conviction won't affect their vote in the Nov. 5 election, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll that closed on Tuesday.

Some 67% of registered voters in the two-day poll said they had heard at least a fair amount about the trial of Hunter Biden, who on Monday was convicted on charges of lying about his drug use to buy a gun. But 80% said the verdict, which marks the first time the child of a sitting president has been convicted of a crime, will have no bearing on their likelihood to vote for Joe Biden, who is seeking re-election in November.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump's conviction last month on charges of trying to cover up a hush money payment to porn star Stormy Daniels carried somewhat more weight in voters' minds, with just 61% saying it would have no impact on their decision.

Independent registered voters, whose support both Biden and Trump are fighting for, lined up with the broader population, with four in five saying Hunter Biden's guilty verdict would not influence their vote and three in five saying Trump's guilty verdict would not influence their vote.

Overall, 16% of registered voters said Hunter Biden's conviction would make them less likely to vote for his father, and 4% said it would make them more likely to do so. Some 24% of registered voters said Trump's conviction would make them less likely to vote for him, while 14% said it would make them more likely to do so.

The online poll surveyed 930 registered voters nationwide and had a margin of error of about 3 percentage points.

Trump and Biden have been neck-and-neck in national public opinion polls, with Trump ahead in several of the battleground states that could decide November's contest.

Trump is due to be sentenced in July and faces potential time in prison. The judge in Hunter Biden's case has yet to set a sentencing date, but has outlined a timeframe that would place sentencing no later than about a month before the presidential election.

Just over half of voters polled - or 57% - said the president's son should be imprisoned for his crimes. That was higher than the 46% in a prior Reuters/Ipsos who said Trump should go to prison for his crimes. Potentially fueling those views, voters in the latest poll were more likely to say Biden received a fair trial, with 65% of them saying so, compared to 48% who said Trump's trial was conducted fairly.

(Reporting by Jason Lange; Editing by Scott Malone and Daniel Wallis)