#TheHill: Democratic divide over Israel-Hamas war looms over Biden’s reelection

09:54, Friday, 24 November, 2023
#TheHill: Democratic divide over Israel-Hamas war looms over Biden’s reelection

The growing divide within the Democratic Party over President Biden’s handling of the Israel-Hamas war is becoming a serious political problem for the 81-year-old president, who has trouble appealing to young voters and energizing his party’s base.

Democratic strategists and progressive activists say growing disenchantment among liberals, especially younger Democrats and minority voters, over the war and graphic images of Palestinian civilian casualties could hurt Democratic turnout in the 2024 election.

“I think it’s a real issue because whenever an important part of the base of your support is upset with you substantively, which I think is happening with young people and what’s going on in Israel and the Middle East, that’s an issue,” said Tad Devine, a longtime Democratic strategist who has worked on several presidential and vice presidential campaigns.

“How big of a problem is it? If the election were in two weeks, it would be a really big problem. Fortunately, the election is in 11 months. I do think there’s a lot of room for the president and his administration to improve on a lot of these issues, not just the issue of the moment in Israel,” he said.

Biden scored a victory Tuesday, when after weeks of pressure from his administration, Israel accepted a deal with Hamas to pause the fighting for four days to allow for the exchange of 50 hostages and 150 Palestinian prisoners. Israel says the truce could be extended if more hostages are released.

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