Poll: Joe Biden Leads Trump Among Active Duty Troops

U.S. soldiers attend welcoming ceremony for NATO troops near Orzysz, Poland, in 2017. (Kacper Pempel/Reuters)

A recent Military Times poll shows President Trump losing support among active-duty service members, trailing Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden by nearly 4 percentage points.

About 41 percent of active-duty troops expressed support for the former vice president while 37 percent said they supported Trump, according to the poll conducted in partnership with the Institute for Veterans and Military Families at Syracuse University.

In contrast, an October 2016 poll showed Trump leading then-Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton by roughly 20 points among military voters.

The recent poll also showed Trump’s approval rating has dropped among active service members since 2016: About 38 percent had a favorable viewing of the president in the poll conducted from July 27 to Aug. 10, compared to 46.1 percent in a 2016 poll. 

Roughly 50 percent of respondents held an unfavorable view of the president in the most recent poll taken ahead of the Republican National Convention.

Trump has long claimed he is popular among military members as a result of big defense budget increases and promises to drawn down troops from overseas conflict zones. 

“It’s fair to say that Trump is not as popular as Republican nominees have been in the past among this group,” former George W. Bush White House adviser Peter Feaver told the Military Times.

“The bottom line is that in 2020, Trump can’t be claiming to have overwhelming support in the military,” said Feaver, who is now a political science professor at Duke University. 

The poll is based on online responses from 1,018 active-duty troops chosen from Military Times subscribers and has a margin of error of less than 2 percentage points.

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