A new poll released ahead of Tuesday’s Democratic presidential debate showed clearly what could be one of the strongest arguments for Vice President Joe Biden to run: electability.
The Fox News survey of registered voters found Biden performing significantly better against the Republican field than former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Biden, who is mulling a late entry into the race, led every Republican candidate tested in theoretical general-election matchups.
Clinton, the Democratic front-runner, trailed each hypothetical GOP opponent:
- Real-estate mogul Donald Trump led Clinton 45% to 40%, but trailed Biden 37% to 50%.
- Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) led Clinton 44% to 40% ,but trailed Biden 41% to 46%.
- Retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson led Clinton 50% to 39%, but trailed Biden 42% to 46%.
- Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina led Clinton 42% to 39%, but trailed Biden 42% to 46%.
- And Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Florida) trailed Biden 43% to 44%. (His matchup against Clinton was not included in the release.)
Although those numbers are encouraging for Biden, they do come with a rather large caveat: Clinton has been battered by Republicans, Democrats, and the media for months while Biden, who is grieving over the loss of his son, has been able to stay above the fray.
Should Biden run, that would likely change.
Additionally, the Fox News poll found Clinton with a large lead in the Democratic primary. Clinton got 45% of the vote among likely Democratic primary voters, compared to 25% for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) and 19% for Biden.
NOW WATCH: Briefing videos
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.