President Joe Biden Reelection Odds Lengthen Amid Afghanistan Crisis

Posted on: August 18, 2021, 01:09h. 

Last updated on: August 18, 2021, 05:08h.

President Joe Biden is amid his greatest political challenge since taking office more than seven months ago.

Joe Biden Afghanistan Taliban 2024 odds
An unidentified Afghanistan man cries on August 17, 2021, as he watches Taliban fighters violently infiltrate a crowd trying to flee the country at the Kabul airport. President Joe Biden’s job performance and future political odds are reeling as a result of the Middle East crisis. (Image: Getty)

The 46th president is facing much scrutiny for the United States’ recent withdrawal from Afghanistan. The pullout resulted in the capital city of Kabul being quickly taken over by Taliban fighters.

Following the stunning collapse of the Afghani government that had been supported by US troops for two decades, the Taliban declared to the world that the country shall now be called the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. The Taliban ruled Afghanistan from 1996 through the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.

The regime retaking Afghanistan on Biden’s watch has lengthened his 2024 odds.

On the UK betting exchange Smarkets, Biden’s odds of winning reelection have dipped from 24.4 percent to 21.7 percent over the past 72 hours. Vice President Kamala Harris, a strong 2024 contender, considering Biden has pledged to be a “transitional” president and perhaps therefore only in it for four years, has also seen her odds lengthen.

Smarkets gives Harris a 13 percent chance of winning the 2024 presidential election. That’s down considerably from 20 percent.

The Taliban arose in 1994 amid the turmoil that came after the withdrawal of Soviet forces from Afghanistan in 1989. They allegedly used brutal public punishments, including floggings, amputations, and mass executions to enforce their rules.

During their rule in Afghanistan, women could not work, girls were not allowed to attend school, and women were only permitted outside of their homes when accompanied by a male relative. Females were prohibited from consuming television, movies, and music.

Polling Plunge

The chaos in Afghanistan, along with mounting concerns regarding COVID-19 and the delta variant heading into the fall and winter months, has led to Biden’s popularity diminishing.

For the first time as president, Biden’s national polling average has dipped below 50 percent. That’s according to research conducted separately by Real Clear Politics and FiveThirtyEight.

With the exception of Donald Trump, Joe Biden’s approval rating continues to lag behind most recent presidents at this stage of their tenure,” explained Matthew Shaddick, head of political markets at Smarkets. “For a sitting president to be given only a 21 percent chance of reelection by Smarkets traders is staggeringly low.

“Kamala Harris’s prospects had been on the downgrade for some time, and both could still have further to fall, given the administration’s foreign policy problems,” Shaddick added.

British sportsbooks permitted to offer traditional lines on political outcomes have also lengthened Biden’s 2024 odds. He’s gone from 4/1 to 5/1, which extends his chance of securing a second term from 20 percent to 16.67 percent.

Trump Comeback?

With tensions high in the Middle East and COVID-19 still prevalent, President Donald Trump is seeing a boost in his 2024 chances. The 45th president’s odds of winning a second term in 2024 on Smarkets has gone from just 3.5 percent in January to nearly 12 percent this week.

Talking with Sean Hannity last night on Fox News, Trump called the Afghanistan situation “The greatest embarrassment in the history of our country.”

As to whether he will run in 2024, the former president said he was legally barred from answering.

“Campaign finance laws are extremely complicated and unbelievably stupid,” Trump said. “I’m actually not allowed to answer that question. Can you believe it? I’d love to answer it. But let me put it this way. I think you’ll be happy.”