Bingo and pickleball among ways Biden will try to win votes of older people

Biden's campaign says the president will fight for Social Security and Medicare.

June 11, 2024, 4:15 PM

President Joe Biden's campaign is aggressively pursuing older voters in key battleground states and will try to mobilize them with activities such as bingo and pickleball, the campaign announced on Tuesday.

As part of a national program to engage older voters in the months before the election, the campaign will hold events to convince them that Biden will fight for programs like Social Security and Medicare that older people rely on.

"Seniors deserve a president who puts them first -- that's President Biden," Biden's campaign manager Julie Chavez Rodriguez said in a statement. "He's taken historic action to lower costs -- including capping the cost of insulin at $35 a month for seniors, protecting pensions, and standing in the way of extreme MAGA Republican efforts to cut Social Security."

Both Biden and former President Donald Trump are working to attract voters in key battleground states as they prepare to face off in what's expected to be a tight race in November.

More than a dozen older voter-driven events are scheduled for this week across several states expected to be competitive in the general election, the campaign announced. While the Biden campaign didn't specify all of the states being targeted, it's likely that the key battleground states of Arizona, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Georgia, Michigan and North Carolina will be prioritized.

PHOTO: President Joe Biden meets with campaign volunteers at Dr. John Bryant Community Center in Racine, Wisconsin, on May 8, 2024.
President Joe Biden meets with campaign volunteers at Dr. John Bryant Community Center in Racine, Wisconsin, on May 8, 2024.
Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

The events this week include "a pickleball tournament in Virginia, a pancake breakfast in Georgia, bingo in Arizona, and a phone bank with the Second Gentleman in New Hampshire," the campaign said.

The locations of these events indicate that Biden feels the need to defend a broader map than he might have expected entering the cycle: Virginia and New Hampshire are states he won by comfortable margins in 2020, but could be more competitive this time around, according to polling in the states gathered by 538.

Some polls, however, also indicate that Biden is in a more favorable spot with older people compared to his opponent. A Quinnipiac poll released last month showed Biden ahead of Trump (55% to 43%, respectively) with voters who are 65 or older. Meanwhile, the two candidates are roughly tied among voters aged 18-34, the poll found.

The campaign’s aggressive support toward older voters comes as the president faces lagging support among certain constituencies that helped propel him to the White House. Recent polls have shown Biden roughly tied or even trailing Trump with the youngest voters. An April CNN poll found Biden trails Trump by 11 points with voters aged 18-34.

In 2020, Biden earned 60% of votes among voters aged 18-29, according to exit polls.