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Last updated: November 3, 2020
With the US Presidential election being only a couple of weeks away, pollsters across Europe have asked who voters favour in the race between incumbent President Donald Trump (Republican Party~ ECR) and former Vice-President Joe Biden (Democratic Party~S&D). The Democratic party is affiliated with the Social Democratic group in the European Parliament, as Democrats are a member of the Progressive Alliance, consisting of social democratic parties around the world. The Republican party is a regional partner of the national-conservative ECR in the European Parliament.
Few pollsters have asked a solid and clear hypothetical voting intention question, most notably Ipsos. Ipsos interviewed voters across the globe asking them the question: “The United States will be holding an election this November to elect a President for the next four years. If you had to vote in this election, would you vote for Republican candidate Donald Trump, or Democrat candidate Joe Biden?” In Germany, 62% responded that they would vote for Joe Biden and only 10% said the same about Donald Trump. 11% of the German sample preferred not to reveal their voting intention, and 18% did not know how to answer. If undecided voters were to be excluded from the sample, 86% of voters would vote for Joe Biden, and only 14% would vote for his Republican opponent.
The Ipsos poll showed that French voters are relatively indecisive about both candidates compared to other Western European countries. 34% would not know whom to vote for if they had the choice between Biden and Trump. 50% supported the democratic contender, only 10% expressed their desire to make their cross for Donald Trump in an election. 6% preferred not to answer the survey question. If the large pool of undecided voters in France were to be excluded, 83% would vote for Joe Biden, and only 17% would vote for Donald Trump.
Similar question in France was also asked by BVA in October. They found that—in raw numbers—57 per cent of the voters would vote for Biden, while only nine per cent would vote for Trump, should they have a chance.12 per cent did not know and 22 would vote for other candidate or would not vote at all.
The Ipsos poll in Italy found that 49% of the electorate would vote for Joe Biden, 15% would vote for Donald Trump. If voters who did not express a voting intention (36%) were to be excluded, Joe Biden would lead among Italians with a 77 to 33 margin.
If voters in Spain could elect the next US President, 54% would vote for Biden. 27% of voters say that they do not know who to vote for, which is two and a half times more compared to those who would vote for Trump (11%). 9% of respondents preferred not to reveal their voting intention to Ipsos. Among decided Spaniards, Biden leads over Trump with an 83-to-17-ratio.
Poland is one of the socially more conservative European countries. This makes the race between Donald Trump and Joe Biden tighter than elsewhere on the continent: Both candidates would receive 27% of the vote, Ipsos found. Logically, if the voters who don’t know who to pick from the two (40%) and those who do not want to reveal their voting intention (5%) were to be excluded, each candidate would receive 50% of the vote.
In Sweden, 73% of the Ipsos sample responded that they would vote for Joe Biden. Only 10% answered that they would favour Donald Trump in an election. 14% answered that they don’t know the answer to this question and 3% preferred not to answer. This translates into a vote share of 88% for Biden and 12% for Trump if only open and decided voters were to be considered.
Hungary has also a socially more conservative population than most European countries. However, a majority still seems to sympathize with Joe Biden. This year’s Ipsos survey found that 33% of the representative sample said that they would vote for Biden, 23% said the same thing about Donald Trump. 37% did not know what to answer, and 6% of those surveyed refused to reveal their voting intention. Hence, 59% of decided and open voters would vouch for Biden, 41% would make their cross for Trump in a hypothetical Hungarian ballot booth for the US Presidential election.
The global Ipsos poll also interviewed a representative sample of voters in Belgium. 63% said they would vote for Joe Biden, 10% would vote for Donald Trump, 21% did not know what to answer, and 6% responded that they were unsure what to answer. If only decided voters who have made up their minds were taken into consideration, Trump would receive 14%, clearly lagging behind Biden with 86%. Zooming in to the first subnational administrative level, Kieskompas surveyed voters in Flanders, Belgium’s northern region. There even 68% favoured Biden, compared with 14% who favoured Trump with, 11.9% for other candidates and 5.9% unsure of their voting preference. Again excluding undecideds—as it is not functionally possible to cast a ballot for the ‘don’t know’ party in the voting booth—would yield a much similar result as in the Netherlands above, with Biden winning easily 72% to Trump’s 15%. Others, for example, Libertarian Jo Jorgensen, Green Howie Hawkins and independent Kanye West would receive 13%.
In the Netherlands the Kieskompas research institute has found that 65.6% of voters would support Joe Biden, while only 16.5% would vote for Trump, should the Dutch be eligible to vote in the election. 12% would vote for some other candidate while 6% were unsure of their opinion. Excluding undecideds (the standard way Europe Elects presents voting intention figures), the race would translate to a landslide victory for the Democratic candidate Biden, receiving 70% to Trump’s 18%, with other candidates receiving roughly 13% of the vote. An Ipsos poll that was conducted on the same topic in the Netherlands showed similar results: Joe Biden received 61%, while only 11% would vote for Donald Trump. 22% of the Ipsos sample did not know what to answer, 6% did not want to share their voting intention in the survey. If only Trump and Biden voters would be considered in this sample, the former Vice-President would receive 85%, while the incumbent would receive 15%.
In Finland, the pollster Kantar TNS found that 75% would want Democrats’ Joe Biden to win the election, while only 10% would vote for Trump, 3% for others and 12% undecided. Excluding the undecided would yield a victory of Biden with 85% to 11%, with 3% of the voters selecting another candidate. Voters of all parties favoured Biden over Trump, except for the right-wing PS-ID. Kantar’s exact question wording isn’t available and they use ‘wanting to win’ and ‘would vote’ rather interchangeably in the article, so it is not at the moment of writing exactly clear whether the poll constitutes a strict voting intention question or rather a preference for a certain candidate winning the election.
In Greece, the ProRata polling agency asked Greek voters ‘if US presidential elections were being held tomorrow, you were eligible to vote and you had to choose between the following two candidates, who would you choose?’. The pollster found that 71% would vote for Biden in an election and only 15% would vote for Trump. Those choosing ‘Don’t know’ numbered 14%, and excluding them would yield a 83-17 victory for former VP Biden. It was not possible to vote for ‘Other’ in this survey.
The pollster Ireland Thinks found that 80% of the electorate in the Irish Republic would vote for Joe Biden; only 13% would vote for Donald Trump. 7% picked don’t know when asked “If you had a vote in the upcoming US Presidential Election which of the following candidates would you vote for?”. If the latter were to be excluded from the sample, Joe Biden’s share would rise to 86%, while Donald Trump would trail behind with only 14%.
The pollster Factum Interactive found that 43% of Latvian voters would favour Joe Biden; only 13% would vote for Donald Trump if they had the choice. If other opinions were to be excluded from the study, Biden would lead with 77% over Trump, who would reach 23%.
Based on these data provided above by different pollsters with almost identical survey questions, Europe Elects projects that around 80% of decided voters in the European Union would vote for Joe Biden, while around 20% would tick the box for the incumbent US President. That is based on data weighted by voters who turned out in the EU Parliament election 2019. A shortcoming of the estimate is that it only covers 83.6% of the EU electorate and that the pollsters ignored or excluded third-party candidates in almost all cases. It does not include the voting intention of adults living in Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czechia, Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia.
And to draw a full circle, Dalia Research, conducting the poll for Bertelsmann Stiftung, has polled a whole representative sample of 27 EU member states about the matter. With a sample of 13,080 people across the EU countries, Dalia Research found out that 45 per cent of the respondents would vote for Joseph Biden, should they be given a chance—against Donald Trump’s 17 per cent. 38 per cent would vote ‘neither’, which could be interpreted as either another candidate or not voting at all. Excluding that, it would be a 73-27 advantage for Biden, the democratic party’s candidate in the race. Such exclusion would, however, not be completely accurate as the others and nonvoters are enmeshed in one column.
Tying it all to a knot, below are the tabulated results presented above. In summary, the various European nations polled indicate that the Democrats’ candidate Joe Biden would be vastly favoured in Europe to the Republicans’ Donald Trump. We’ll be continuing to update the article as new relevant data comes in.
Explicit hypothetical voting intention (excluding undecided voters)
|Country||Biden (%)||Trump (%)||Other (%)||Pollster|
|Russia (not in EU)||33||68||–||Ipsos|
|Turkey (not in EU)||53||47||–||Ipsos|
|UK (not in EU)||81||19||–||Ipsos|
This aggregation was assembled by collaboration of many Europe Elects team members, including Tobias Gerhard Schminke, Euan Healey, Polychronis Karampelas, Celso Gomes and Julius Lehtinen
On top of the continuous edits to add new data, an earlier version of the article was not up to our standards of consistency, transparency and quality, which we have now corrected. Although there was no error in the polling results of the pollsters, we mistakenly initially reported numbers on another question in the instance of Netherlands. We want to ensure our unique work and aggregation on European polling and voting intentions is as transparent and verifiable as possible, and all work presented in this article should now be replicable from the sources cited.
We have also streamlined the article and stripped if ot more vague polling questions about who do Europeans want to win the race, as the polling on explicit hypothetical voting intention has accumulated.