Trump and Biden with Majority Support Ahead of Tuesday Primary

A new Emerson College Polling/The Hill survey of Michigan voters finds 46% of voters support former President Donald Trump and 44% President Joe Biden in a potential 2024 presidential general election matchup. Ten percent are undecided. Since January, Biden’s support has increased by three percentage points, while Trump’s support decreased by one.

“Male voters in Michigan break for Trump by twelve points, 53% to 41%, whereas women voters break for Biden by five, 46% to 41%, Spencer Kimball, executive director of Emerson College Polling, noted. “Michigan’s independent voters break for Trump over Biden 43% to 37%.”

With third-party candidates on the ballot, 42% support Trump, 39% Joe Biden, 6% Robert Kennedy Jr., and 1% support Cornel West and Jill Stein respectively. Eleven percent are undecided.

Before Tuesday’s primary, 69% of Republican primary voters plan to support Donald Trump, 20% Nikki Haley, and 11% are undecided. When the 11% of undecided voters are asked which candidate they lean towards, Trump’s support increases to 76%, and Haley to 24%. 

In the Democratic Primary, 75% support President Biden, 5% Dean Phillips, 9% plan to vote “uncommitted” on the ballot, and 12% are undecided. With the 12% undecided pushed to ask which candidate they lean toward, Biden’s support increases to 77%, Phillips to 7%, and “uncommitted” increases to 16%. 

  • 28% of voters under 30 plan to vote as “uncommitted” on Tuesday.

The economy is the top issue for 31% of Michigan voters, followed by immigration (13%), threats to democracy (12%), healthcare (10%), housing affordability (8%), education (7%), crime (7%), and abortion access (5%). 

“Voters who say the economy is the top issue facing Michigan break for Trump over Biden, 56% to 33%, along with immigration 86% to 7%,” Kimball said. “Those who say threats to democracy break for Biden 76% to 19%.”

President Biden’s age raises serious doubts in the minds of 57% of voters in supporting Biden in 2024, while 43% say Biden’s age is not a serious consideration for them. Trump’s criminal indictments raise doubts for 55% of voters, while 45% do not consider his indictments to be a serious consideration in their vote. 

Biden’s age presents more of a concern among voters under 50 than over 50: 63% of voters under 50 say Biden’s age raises doubts about voting for him compared to 53% of voters over 50,” Kimball said. 

Biden holds a 38% job approval among Michigan voters, while 52% disapprove of the job he is doing in office. Governor Whitmer holds a 49% approval rating, while 40% disapprove of the job she is doing in office. Forty-four percent think the things in the state are on the wrong track, while 40% think the state is headed in the right direction. 

A majority (61%) of voters think the Michigan Legislature’s recently passed series of bills on gun control will be effective (19% very effective, 42% somewhat effective), while 21% think it will be not too effective, and 18% not at all effective. 

Regarding the impact of legislation that will make energy generation in Michigan renewable by 2040, 42% think it will make Michigan’s energy supply less reliable, 37% more reliable, and 22% no difference. 


The Emerson College Polling/The Hill Michigan survey was conducted February 20-24, 2024. The sample of registered voters, n=1,000, has a credibility interval, similar to a poll’s margin of error (MOE), of +/- 3 percentage points. The data sets were weighted by gender, education, race, age, party affiliation, and region based on 2024 registration modeling. Turnout modeling is based on U.S. Census parameters, and voter registration data (MI S.O.S.).

It is important to remember that subsets based on demographics, such as gender, age, education, and race/ethnicity, carry with them higher credibility intervals, as the sample size is reduced. Survey results should be understood within the poll’s range of scores, and with a confidence interval of 95% a poll will fall outside the range of scores 1 in 20 times.

Data was collected by contacting an Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system of landlines, cell phones via MMS-to-web, a consumer list of emails (both provided by Aristotle), and an online panel of voters provided by Alchemer.

This survey was conducted by Emerson College Polling and sponsored by Nexstar Media. All questions asked in this survey with exact wording, along with full results and cross tabulations can be found under “Full Results.”