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Michelle Obama top choice to replace Joe Biden as Democratic candidate for elections, survey finds

Michelle Obama is the leading choice to replace Joe Biden as the presidential candidate for Democrats if he drops out of the race, a survey has found.

The former first lady emerged as the top alternate to Mr Biden for the 2024 race, beating Gavin Newsom, Kamala Harris, and Hillary Clinton amid questions about the president’s health and fitness.

About 48 per cent of Democratic voters supported “finding another candidate to replace Joe Biden before the election in November”, according to a Rasmussen Reports survey released on Monday.

About 47 per cent of the respondents believe “it is likely Democrats will replace Biden with another candidate as their presidential nominee before the election in November, including 22 per cent who see it as very likely”.

Meanwhile, 45 per cent of 960 voters don’t think it’s likely Democrats will substitute another candidate.

At least 20 per cent of the respondents supported Ms Obama as the face replacing Mr Biden. She was followed by the vice-president with 15 per cent, while about 12 per cent said they would like to see Ms Clinton return. Mr Newsom received support from 11 per cent of respondents.

Ms Obama had earlier admitted that her fears about the 2024 elections are among the things that keep her up at night. In an interview in January, she said: “I am terrified about what could possibly happen, because our leaders matter.

“We cannot take this democracy for granted. And sometimes I worry that we do.”

Earlier, Mr Biden won the presidential primary in Michigan on Tuesday, alongside his Republican counterpart Donald Trump, solidifying an all-but-certain rematch between the two. As of early Wednesday morning, Mr Biden received 81.1 per cent of the vote in the Democratic primary, while 13 per cent of voters chose “uncommitted.”

Mr Biden’s overwhelming victory in Michigan pushes back most of the concerns some had about a primary in a crucial swing state. Many Arab-Americans have expressed dissatisfaction toward Mr Biden regarding his support for Israel in its response to Hamas in Gaza staging a surprise attack on 7 October that killed 1,200 people.

Arab-Americans make up about two per cent of Michigan’s population and many have loved ones who have either died or otherwise been displaced by Israel’s assault on Gaza that has so far killed more than 30,000 Palestinians, many of them women and children.

But Mr Biden, 81, continues to face lagging poll numbers in multiple surveys in Michigan and continues to face lingering questions about his advanced age. Mr Trump, 77, has repeatedly targeted Mr Biden for supposedly not being mentally cognizant, and former South Carolina governor Nikki Haley, who is running against Mr Trump for the Republican nomination, has said both men are too old.