President Biden is set to face what could be the toughest battleground test in his bid for re-election in 2024 as he prepares for a potential rematch with former President Donald Trump.
Georgia, long a bastion of Republican support, has been one of the most closely watched states in recent election cycles, and could ultimately determine who ends up in the White House on Inauguration Day 2025.
Recent polls have shown Trump with an early advantage in the Peach State, strengthened by Biden’s lackluster support from Black voters, and growing concerns among Democrat activists over funding and enthusiasm have emboldened Republicans hoping to reverse the state’s battleground status.
According to a recent New York Times report, Democrat grassroots organizers in Georgia who helped boost Biden to victory in 2020, as well as Democrat Sens. Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock, are beginning to grow concerned that the party’s attention on the state has begun to wane, evidenced by less money flowing in from national liberal groups and increased “apathy” among voters in key constituencies.
The report added that cost-cutting and delayed voter initiatives had “privately stoked fears among some organizers about their ability to replicate their successes.”
One activist told the outlet that Georgia wasn’t being treated as “first tier” by national Democrats, and that there were indications the state was “not going to get top-level prioritization.”
A poll released in early November by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution showed Biden narrowly trailing Trump 44%-45%, with just 78% of Black voters expressing support for the president. That surprising number was down from the 88% support from Black voters Biden garnered in 2020.
A New York Times poll released the same week showed Biden trailing Trump by a wider margin, 43%-49%, a trend that continued in a December CNN poll that showed the president trailing the former president 44%-49%.
Despite those early signs that winning Georgia could be a bigger hurdle for the Biden campaign this time around, some argue the state is very much in play for Democrats.
“Georgia is a highly competitive state, and I think that really speaks to just how much progress Democrats have made there over the period of a few cycles,” one Democratic strategist with extensive experience in Georgia politics told Fox News Digital. “You’d be hard-pressed, I think, to find someone on any side of the political aisle at this point who disagrees with that.”
“I think that says a lot about the ability of Georgia Democrats and the president’s campaign to get out and win this thing. The fact that you now have two Democratic senators in the state, one of whom was just reelected in the last cycle, says a lot about how there is a strong path to victory,” they said.
The strategist argued that voters seeing “a more positive economic reality,” combined with the investment made by the Biden administration on infrastructure projects in Georgia, and some Republican voters in the state hesitant to embrace Trump, could pose a greater challenge for Republicans to overcome.
“We’re talking about the kind of swing voters that make up a lot of the suburban areas. Trying to convince them to return to Donald Trump, particularly in a situation in which the state’s sitting governor has already expressed his own reservations about the president, is going to be a challenge for them,” they said.
“And this kind of anti-democratic, anti-choice agenda that Republicans really haven’t leaned away from in any way, I think just complements the president’s strengths. They’re not necessarily ready to take this kind of new radical agenda you see a lot of the 2024 Republican candidates pushing,” they added.
Others, however, argue that Biden being at the top of the 2024 Democrat ticket will continue to drive Georgians’ sentiment toward Republicans.
“Georgians want an end to the non-stop crises coming out of Washington, from high prices, reckless spending and harebrained climate activism, to a partisan justice system, indoctrination in the classroom, and a declining commitment to our military,” former Republican Georgia Sen. Kelly Loeffler told Fox News Digital.
Upon leaving the Senate in 2021, Loeffler founded Greater Georgia, a non-profit that aims to register more conservative voters in the state, engage a more diverse slate of voters, and turn out the vote with the necessary ground game infrastructure. The group played a major role in the down-ballot success of Georgia Republicans in the 2022 midterm elections.
According to Loeffler, the “political prosecution” of Trump in Fulton County, Georgia for allegedly trying to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election in the state runs in stark contrast to Democrats’ “refusal to prosecute actual criminals,” and is contributing to Republicans’ advantage in the state compared to the losses they suffered in 2020.
“With America’s strength being dramatically diminished in the last three years, and the majority of Georgians saying our country is on the wrong track, Georgians know they are not better off than they were four years ago,” she said.
“Whether paying higher bills with stagnant wages, rising credit card balances, and mortgage rates at 8%, the weight of the Biden Administration’s out-of-control spending and regulatory regime is weighing on hardworking Georgians from all walks of life,” she added.
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