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Third-party bids could draw votes from both major parties in 2024 presidential election

How 3rd party candidates could affect 2024 presidential election
How 3rd party candidates could affect 2024 presidential election 02:15

MINNEAPOLIS — The presidential election is coming to Minnesota sooner than you might think.

Early voting for Minnesota's March 5 primary begins on Jan. 19.

National polls continue to show the presidential election could be a Trump-Biden rematch, with current national and key state polls showing former President Donald Trump winning

Of 13 national general election polls conducted this month looking at a rematch between President Joe Biden and Trump, 11 polls show Trump winning and two show Biden winning. Of course, a lot can happen in 11 months. 

Trump is facing 91 felony counts in four separate criminal proceedings. His federal trial, where he is accused of trying to interfere with the 2020 election, begins March 4, 2024. That's the day before Super Tuesday, when Minnesota and 16 other states and territories have their presidential primaries and caucuses.

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But looming beyond the primaries are a series of third-party bids, including an independent run from Robert F. Kennedy Jr. Kennedy, a member of the storied Kennedy family, is polling at about 15% in national polls. Progressive activist Cornel West is polling at about 5%. West is viewed as a serious threat to draw votes away from Biden. But polls show Kennedy, best known for his anti-vax stance, would hurt Trump more than he would hurt Biden. 

Hamline Professor David Schultz, who has written a book on swing states in presidential elections, was a guest on WCCO Sunday Morning at 10:30 a.m.

"What's first going on at this point is that about 60% of the American public does not want to see a Trump-Biden re-run at this point and therefore are looking for other candidates," he said.

Of course, both Trump and Biden have to secure their party's nominations. Trump has a 50-point lead over his rivals, a lead that continues to hold up despite the criminal charges against him. Biden's lead over spiritual leader Marianne Williamson and Minnesota Congressman Dean Phillips is more than 60 points.

A year from now, it will all be decided. What an unpredictable journey it promises to be.

You can watch WCCO Sunday Morning with Esme Murphy and Joseph Dames at 6 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.

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