Power Poll: Community leaders see victory for Biden

Former U.S. Vice President and 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden reacts as he is introduced by Atlanta mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms during an assembly of Southern black mayors Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019 in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Amis)

Credit: John Amis / Associated Press

Credit: John Amis / Associated Press

Metro Atlanta leaders say they expect to see a new team in charge of running the country after the November elections – bolstered by the history-making addition to the Democratic ticket of U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris.

Nearly 68% percent of respondents to the Atlanta Power Poll said they believe former Vice President Joe Biden and Harris will defeat Donald Trump to reclaim the White House for Democrats. Only 32 percent say they think the president will win re-election on Nov. 3.

The Atlanta Power Poll is part of a nationwide survey that asks community leaders for their opinions on important local issues. In Georgia, the poll appears exclusively on AJC.com and in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

ExploreThe latest Georgia election news

The latest survey was taken Aug. 17 to Aug. 20, only days after Biden announced that Harris would be his running mate and potentially become the country’s first female, black, and Asian American vice president. It also coincided with the virtual Democratic National Convention, in which Biden and Harris both officially became their party’s nominees.

Sent via email to 896 metro Atlanta business, political and civic leaders, the survey does not have the precision of a scientific poll. It is meant to provide insight into the thinking of metro leaders, 131 or 14.6% of whom responded.

One-third of Power Poll respondents said they believe Biden’s chances of election were bolstered by the selection of Harris, a former prosecutor, senator from California and a 2020 presidential candidate. About 43 percent said the pick “somewhat helps” Biden, while about 21 percent said they believe Harris’ selection either hurts or has no effect on his chances.

About 63 percent of poll respondents said they personally fall in Biden’s camp. About 30 percent said they are backing Trump, and about 8% said they are not supporting either man.

Sixty-eight percent of respondents said they do not approve of President Trump’s job performance. Thirty-two percent said they approve of how he’s doing, although they did not offer any comments in support of him.

Larry Schall, president of Atlanta’s Oglethorpe University, said, in an email to Power Poll, that he feels “so much is at stake with this election, more than in the past.”

“It’s not about left or right,” Schall said. “It’s about whether the rule of law matters any more in America.”

ExploreAJC July Power Poll: Community leaders see need for masks, local decision making

Clayton County school board member Jessie Goree said she believes change is needed at the top.

“We currently don’t have competent leadership …,” she wrote in an email.

Others were dubious about just what consequences the election will have.

Randy Lewis, managing director and co-owner of Fitzpatrick & Lewis Public Relations, predicted this will be “the messiest presidential election in modern history.

“A Trump victory will cause a Democratic Party meltdown,” he said in an email. “A Biden victory will cause a massive fight between the Democratic mainstream and the growing leftist/Marxist wing of the party for control of the national agenda. The result in either outcome will be four years of civil and social strife. There is no happy ending.”

ExplorePrevious AJC Power Poll survey results

Questions

Who do you support in the 2020 presidential election between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden?

Donald Trump — 39 (29.77%)

Joe Biden — 82 (62.60%)

Neither — 10 (7.63%)

Overall, do you approve or disapprove of President Trump’s job performance?

Approve — 42 (32.06%)

Disapprove — 89 (67.94%)

How do you believe the addition of Sen. Kamala Harris will affect the election?

Has no effect — 12 (9.16%)

Somewhat helps Biden — 57 (43.51%)

Helps Biden a lot — 44 (33.59%)

Somewhat hurts Biden — 15 (11.45%)

Hurts Biden a lot — 3 (2.29%)

Who do you believe will win the presidency?

Donald Trump — 42 (32.06%)

Joe Biden — 89 (67.94%)

-------------------------------------------------

Comments

“It is imperative that we have competent leadership at the National level. We currently don’t have competent leadership and we must have a change in the Presidency by electing Joe Biden as the next President of the United States of America.” — Jessie Goree, Clayton County school board chair

“So much is at stake with this election, more than in the past. It’s not about left or right. It’s about whether the rule of law matters anymore in America.” — Larry Schall, Oglethorpe University president

“Georgia has a lot on the line this fall. The outcomes here could have national repercussions regarding control of the U.S. House of Representatives in particular.” — Kelly Walsh, Decatur city commissioner

“You can’t be in the middle; you have to be radical right or radical left, or you’re discounted as not informed by both sides. I feel bullied by the left and out of step with the right.” — Ed McBrayer, executive director of The Path Foundation

“This will be the messiest presidential election in modern history. The Democrats have never accepted the outcome of the 2016 election. A Trump victory will cause a Democratic Party meltdown. A Biden victory will cause a massive fight between the Democratic mainstream and the growing leftist/Marxist wing of the party for control of the national agenda. The result in either outcome will be 4 years of civil and social strife. There is no happy ending.” — Randy Lewis, managing director and co-owner of Fitzpatrick & Lewis Public Relations

“I am observing an increasing polarization in our communities and it saddens me. Discussions quickly get heated and people even unfriend each other on social media because of the differences in political views. I hope we find a way to respectfully share our opinions and stay united against the common problems we are dealing with as a nation.” — Kenan Sener, head of the Fulton County Science Academy

In Other News