Commentary

In Joe We Trust: The Other Guy, Not So Much


Three months after benchmarking the trust Americans imbue in Joe Biden's presidential brand, the Democratic contender's trust rating has moved up six percentage points, with nearly half of American voters indicating they have confidence in him.

That's the finding of the latest edition of Brand Keys Media Trust Tracker, reflecting the views of American voters as of August. While his opponent, the incumbent President, also moved up seven percentage points, he is still mired at less than a fifth of American voters trusting him.

While half of Americans still don't trust Biden, distrust of politicians typically is high to begin with.

Also, Brand Keys President Robert Passikoff notes that candidates historically get more benefit of the doubt as the election approaches.

"As the election gets closer, people are prone to be more supportive of all candidates," he explains, adding, "but the increase is only directional, and not statistically significant."

Statistically speaking, Biden has a 2.5 margin of trust vs. the incumbent President.

The research was conducted before Biden announced Kamala Harris as his running mate, so it's hard to say how that will impact perceptions of the presidential candidates' trust, but according to Morning Consult's and Politico's tracking, Harris was most likely the most strategic pick for Biden's running mate, in terms of the net of awareness and favorability (see below).

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