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President Joe Biden listens during an event about infrastructure in the South Court Auditorium on the White House complex in Washington, on Oct. 19, 2022.
Joe Biden during an event at the White House, on Oct. 19, 2022. Susan Walsh / AP file

Two-thirds of Republicans still don't believe Biden was elected legitimately

Just 5% of "Trump-first" Republicans view Biden's election as legitimate almost two years after the 2020 race concluded.


Almost two years after President Joe Biden won the presidential election, the majority of Republicans still do not believe that election was legitimate.

New polling from NBC News shows just 22% of registered Republican voters believe in the legitimacy of Biden's election, with 65% viewing his election illegitimate.

That makes Republicans an outlier — overall, 60% of registered voters believe Biden's election was legitimate and 33% do not. One-hundred percent of Democrats and 74% of independents view his election as legitimate, along with a majority of white voters, voters of colors, independents, voters in cities and suburbs, as well as voters across all regions and age groups.

The only subgroups in the new poll that don't believe in the legitimacy of Biden's election are those who are correlated with stronger support for Republicans.

Just 19% of those who voted for former President Trump in 2020 believe that election was legitimate, along with 22% who want the GOP to win control of Congress this fall, 22% of white evangelicals, 34% of rural voters and 43% of white working-class voters.

Overall, confidence in Biden's election has stayed virtually stagnant since the Jan. 2021 poll. Democratic belief in the election's legitimacy rose 4% points from 96% to 100%, as the share of independents rose from 62% to 74%.

But Republicans remained steady — just 21% said in Jan. 2021 that Biden's election was legitimate, and 22% said so in the Oct. 2022 poll.

Thirty-one percent of Republicans who say they support the party primarily over Trump believe in the legitimacy of Biden's election, compared to just 5% of those who support Trump primarily over the national Republican Party.

The NBC News poll was conducted Oct. 14-18 of 1,000 registered voters — 750 of whom were reached by cellphone — and it has an overall margin of error of plus-minus 3.1 percentage points.