For Biden and Trump, 2022 is a sequel to 2020 and a preview for 2024?

Washington – This year’s midterm elections are a bizarre continuation of the last presidential election and are being played out as a potential preview of the next presidential election.

Donald Trump, who refuses to step off the stage after his defeat and continues to amass his supporters with lies about voter fraud, has spent months ranting against Joe Biden, usually a naive public against the incumbent president. We have reshaped the downvote campaign to act as a vote.

The result was an unprecedented episode of political shadowboxing, in which the current president and his immediate predecessor (and potential future challenger) marched across the country in support of their party’s candidates. It runs endlessly.

even if he faces multiple surveysincluding a criminal investigation into handling classified documents at his Mar-a-Lago estate, Trump has been hold a noisy gathering Battleground states alternate between promoting hand-picked candidates and denouncing their enemies. He disparages and denounces Biden while lying, as he did last month in Ohio, that “we didn’t lose” in the last election.

Mr. Biden has so far avoided the hottest midterm elections. Focus on fundraising and official events He draws a contrast between Democrats and Republicans policy issue. He often avoids directly referring to “the last man,” but on Saturday in Oregon, Biden warned that “Trump rules the Republican Party.”

Sometimes two men travel to the same place, such as when they visit Wilkesbarre, Pennsylvania, and within a few days they reflect a narrow political map that determines which party controls the U.S. Senate. .

“This is very unusual,” said Jeffrey Engel, founding director of the Center for Presidential History at Southern Methodist University.

“Without exception, since the Great Depression” — Republican Herbert Hoover, despite losing to Democrat Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1932, tried to plot a return to power — they,” he said. said.

Neither Trump nor Biden have officially announced their reruns. Mr. Trump is close to declaring his candidacy, and Mr. Biden has said he wants to seek a second term.

If they face off again, the rivalry between them could become one of the longest and most influential political duels in American history, spanning several years and multiple elections.

Voters don’t seem to want a rematch.

Recent AP-NORC Poll It shows that only 3 in 10 Americans want either Biden or Trump to run for president within two years. Five of his 10 Democrats want Biden reelected, while six of his 10 Republicans want Trump reelected.

Engel said a rematch between Biden and Trump would likely be demoralizing.

“The bottom line is that our country is not moving forward,” he said. “I’ve never met anyone enjoying that campaign.”

However, it is clear that both men think their destinies are tied to each other.

When CNN’s Jake Tapper asked Biden if he was the only person who could fend off his predecessor in another campaign, the president dodged the question but expressed confidence about his potential.

“I believe I can beat Donald Trump again,” he said.

Trump will dispute the use of the word “again” — he continues to spread the lie that Biden was only inaugurated through voter fraud.

It’s an integral part of Trump’s political message, and he never fails to bring it up at rallies of Republican candidates who endorsed his erroneous views on the last election. Sometimes we go even deeper into the . This is a reminder that another campaign may represent an even sharper break with reality.

At a recent rally in Arizona, Trump alluded that Biden was surrounded by “vicious and very smart people pulling strings.”

“No one thought this would happen in our country. It all happened because of rigged and stolen elections,” he said.

the former president Increased support for QAnon conspiracy theorywhich depicts Trump as battling an ominous hidden force.

Trump used the Truth Social platform to share an image of himself wearing a Q lapel pin superimposed with the words “The Storm is Coming.”

People close to Trump said they believed a strong Republican performance in November would further boost Trump’s re-election two years later.

In addition to attracting local media attention and rallies to revitalize Republican bases, Mr. Trump is supporting candidates in other ways, holding fundraiser and conference calls on their behalf. Most importantly, last week his new super PAC, MAGA Inc. Secured nearly $5 million in airtime For important state advertisements attacking opponents of his endorsing candidates.

The group’s first round of ads didn’t specifically feature Mr. Trump, not even mentioning his name. Republicans have complained that Mr. Trump has been hoarding small donations for himself and refusing to help candidates who have forced voters to nominate them.

But longtime Republican strategist Mike Duheim is unsure whether the results of the midterm elections will affect Trump’s plans for the next presidential election.

“He will take credit for every victory and deflect blame for every defeat,” he said.

Trump has argued that the midterm elections will be “a referendum on corruption and extremism for Joe Biden and radical Democrats,” as he did in Pennsylvania last month.

But Duheim said Trump prevented that from happening by injecting himself into this year’s election campaign, giving Biden a boost. expressed concern about the economy.

“Trump is no ordinary president, and he didn’t seem to really care about the party. He seems to care more about himself than the party that put him in office.”

The Biden campaign has a similar view. The adviser, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the internal conversations, said those around Biden saw the midterm elections as more of an option than a referendum. Trump’s presence is seen as helping him back Democrats’ claims, advisers said.

Democratic pollster Serinda Lake said it would only be more helpful if Trump announced another presidential election.

“He’s dangerously close to it,” she said.

Biden has postponed any announcement about his candidacy until after Election Day and remains focused on the midterm elections.

Like any incumbent president in an election year, Biden blended his political and governmental mandates once the polls began.

He stopped in Colorado on Wednesday, Designated as the first national monument It fulfills the wishes of the state’s Senior Democratic Senator, Michael Bennett, who is seeking re-election this year. Bennett hopes to win, but he faces a concerted challenge from Republican businessman Joe O’Dea.


Associated Press reporters Jill Colvin of New York and Hannah Fingerhat of Washington contributed to this report.


Follow AP’s coverage of the midterm elections.


The story was corrected to show that the Colorado Senator’s last name was Bennett instead of Bennett.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission. For Biden and Trump, 2022 is a sequel to 2020 and a preview for 2024?

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