- The Washington Times - Sunday, February 27, 2022

Most U.S. voters say Russian President Vladimir Putin would not have invaded Ukraine if Donald Trump were still president, according to a newly released survey.

The Harvard-Harris poll first reported Friday by The Hill found that 62% of registered voters surveyed believe the attack on Ukraine would not have happened with Mr. Trump in the White House, including 85% of Republicans, 63% of independents, and 38% of Democrats.

In addition, 59% agreed that Mr. Putin took military action against Ukraine because “he sees weakness in President Biden,” while 41% disagreed.

There was little in the way of good news for Mr. Biden in the poll, conducted Feb. 23-24 with 2,206 registered voters by the Harris Poll with the Harvard Center for American Political Studies, which was posted online Saturday by Interactive Polls.

The survey found that 53% have doubts about Mr. Biden‘s mental fitness; 64% believe he is showing himself to be too old for the office, and 54% say he is unable to “handle difficult international issues like defending Ukraine from the Russians.”

The president’s approval rating also fell to the lowest point of his presidency at 38%, down from 39% in the Jan. 22 survey.

Mr. Biden had trouble stacking up against Mr. Trump. More than half of registered voters surveyed, or 54%, said that the Republican was a better president versus 46% who said Mr. Biden has been better.

Both Mr. Biden and Mr. Trump were the favorites among the party faithful to win the 2024 presidential primary contests. In a hypothetical general election rematch, however, Mr. Trump defeated Mr. Biden by 48%-42%.

The second choice for Democratic voters for the 2024 presidential primary nod was Vice President Kamala D. Harris, while Republican voters picked Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.

Mr. Trump was also the most favorably regarded political figure among those polled, followed by former Vice President Mike Pence; Sen. Bernard Sanders, Vermont independent; Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas Republican; and Mr. Biden.

The Harris Poll is headed by Mark Penn, the chief strategist and pollster for the 2008 Hillary Clinton presidential campaign.

The poll, a representative online sample, does not report a confidence probability score or margin of error.

• Valerie Richardson can be reached at vrichardson@washingtontimes.com.

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