Democrats Overwhelmingly Support Biden's Decision Not To Run

Most think highly of him, but aren't sure he had a path to victory.
Vice President Joe Biden, center, speaks in the Rose Garden of the White House with his wife, Jill Biden, and President Barac
Vice President Joe Biden, center, speaks in the Rose Garden of the White House with his wife, Jill Biden, and President Barack Obama in Washington, D.C., Oct. 21, 2015. Biden won't seek the Democratic presidential nomination in 2016, a decision that most Democrats in a HuffPost/YouGov survey say they support.

Sixty-eight percent of Democrats think Vice President Joe Biden made the right decision when he announced Wednesday that he won't seek the presidency in 2016, a new HuffPost/YouGov poll finds. Just 12 percent think Biden made the wrong call.

Biden, who saw his favorability ratings surge over the summer, remains highly popular, both within his party and across partisan lines. Seventy-two percent of Democrats say they hold a positive opinion of him, while just 14 percent view him negatively. Americans as a whole are 19 points more likely to rate him favorably than unfavorably, making him better-liked than virtually any other politician on the national stage, including President Barack Obama, Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton and GOP presidential hopefuls Donald Trump and Ben Carson.

Had he entered, Biden would likely have seen his sky-high ratings fall back to earth after incurring the scrutiny and criticism faced by an actual candidate. Clinton saw even stronger ratings than Biden's as secretary of state, but became dramatically less popular once her campaign kicked into gear.

And Democrats, despite their esteem for Biden, don't believe he was especially likely to nab their party's nomination. Just 14 percent think he would have been very likely to win the primary had he entered, while 35 percent say he would have been somewhat likely to win and 41 percent that it's somewhat or very unlikely that he would have prevailed.

Recent polls of the Democratic race have found that Biden's decision not to run is likely to benefit Clinton.

The HuffPost/YouGov poll consisted of 1,000 completed interviews conducted Oct. 21-23 among U.S. adults, using a sample selected from YouGov's opt-in online panel to match the demographics and other characteristics of the adult U.S. population.

The Huffington Post has teamed up with YouGov to conduct daily opinion polls. You can learn more about this project and take part in YouGov's nationally representative opinion polling. Data from all HuffPost/YouGov polls can be found here. More details on the polls' methodology are available here.

Most surveys report a margin of error that represents some, but not all, potential survey errors. YouGov's reports include a model-based margin of error, which rests on a specific set of statistical assumptions about the selected sample, rather than the standard methodology for random probability sampling. If these assumptions are wrong, the model-based margin of error may also be inaccurate. Click here for a more detailed explanation of the model-based margin of error.