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More than 60% of Americans doubt both Biden and Trump’s mental capabilities, new poll finds

A new poll found that six in 10 Americans doubt both the mental capacities of Joe Biden and Donald Trump ahead of the 2024 presidential election.

Mr Biden is 81-years-old — already the oldest president to ever serve — and Mr Trump is 77-years-old.

Approximately 63 per cent of respondents said that they are not very or not at all confident in Mr Biden's mental abilities. Fewer, but still more than half — 57 per cent — of the respondents said they felt the same about Mr Trump.

The findings were part of a new Associated Press-NORC Centre for Public Affairs Research survey to gauge voter confidence in the two men who will likely be on the November ballot.

A similar poll was conducted specifically about Mr Biden's memory in January. At that time only about half of those polled expressed similar concerns, suggesting the public has grown more troubled over the last few months.

Independents were far more likely to express concerns over Mr Biden's mental acuity, with 80 per cent reporting they questioned the president's ability to govern. Of the same group, 56 per cent expressed similar concerns about Mr Trump.

When asked if they approved of Mr Biden's governing, only 38 per cent of the respondents answered in the positive. Approximately 74 per cent of Democrat respondents said they approved of Mr Biden's job thus far, while 20 per cent of Independents and only six per cent of Republicans shared those feelings.

The poll breaks down Mr Biden's performance in a number of key areas, and approval ratings differed between issues.

With regard to climate change, health care, abortion, and the Russia-Ukraine war, 4 in 10 respondents said that approved of the way Mr Biden is handling the issues.

However, when it comes to immigration, the Israel-Hamas war, and the economy, fewer people — 29 per cent, 31 per cent, and 34 per cent, respectively — said they approved.

More than half of the respondents — 57 per cent — said that they believe the economy is worse off now than before Mr Biden took office in 2021. Only 3 in 10 said things were better since he became president.

Despite those numbers, more than half of the respondents — 54 per cent — said their personal finances were doing well.

Regarding mental acuity, party lines predicted which respondents were more comfortable with each candidate. Only one-third of the responding Democrats said they were concerned about Mr Biden's mental capabilities.

Similarly, nearly 60 per cent of Republicans said they were confident in Mr Trump's mental capabilities. Approximately 20 per cent of Republicans said they were concerned about his cognitive abilities when it came to governing.

The poll surveyed 1,102 adults and was conducted between 22 February and 26 February 2024. The margin of sampling error for all respondents was plus or minus 4.1 percentage points.