President Trump replaced his 2020 campaign manager on Wednesday evening as numerous polls showed the incumbent trailing behind Democratic rival Joe Biden.
Trump promoted Bill Stepien, a longtime aide, to campaign manager while Brad Parscale will continue as a senior campaign adviser. Parscale will also continue to oversee the campaign’s digital strategy arm.
“Both were heavily involved in our historic 2016 win, and I look forward to having a big and very important second win together,” Trump wrote in a Facebook post. “This one should be a lot easier as our poll numbers are rising fast, the economy is getting better, vaccines and therapeutics will soon be on the way, and Americans want safe streets and communities!”
The move comes as polls show Biden with a wide lead, with RealClearPolitics polling averages giving Biden almost 49 percent to Trump’s 40 percent as of Wednesday. Biden has consistently bested Trump in these polling averages since fall 2019.
In a new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll released on Wednesday, 51 percent of likely voters said they would choose Biden while 40 percent said they would back Trump.
“President Trump has hit the trifecta in the misery market,” commented Peter Hart, a Democratic strategist who worked on the poll. “The three key indicators—job rating, personal feelings, attitudes on re-election—are all deeply submerged underwater.”
However, the poll showed that 54 percent of voters approved of Trump’s handling of the economy. A Monmouth University poll released Wednesday also found that most voters believe there are “secret” Trump voters who won’t tell others of their intentions.
“The media consistently reports that Biden is in the lead, but voters remember what happened in 2016. The specter of a secret Trump vote looms large in 2020,” Monmouth University Polling Institute director Patrick Murray said.