A shocking new survey released Sunday by USA Today and Suffolk University found that President Joe Biden’s approval rating has sunk to a dismal 38 percent, driven largely by a dramatic decline in support among Independents who carried him to victory over President Donald Trump a year ago.
But the only thing worse than the news for Biden is that the approval rating for his vice president, Kamala Harris, is at 28 percent, according to the survey.
Administration advocates say that Biden and Democrats, in general, are headed for a rebound after the passage of a $1.2 trillion infrastructure package on Friday, which the president is expected to sign. And they also note an economic report that was released Friday morning showing that some 531,000 new jobs were added in October, taking unemployment down to 4.6 percent, or about 1 percent higher than it was at a historic low in February 2020 under Trump as COVID-19 began to spread.
“That said, the survey illuminates the size of the hole Democrats need to dig out of as they look toward the elections in one year – on Nov. 8, 2022 – that will determine control of Congress and shape the second two years of Biden’s term,” USA Today reported.
Despite the infrastructure bill and the jobs report, the survey may be more reflective of the realities the vast majority of Americans are now dealing with on a daily basis.
Consumers are paying substantially more for gasoline, food, energy, and most commodities amid a supply chain crunch and administration policies that many economists believe will only make things worse between now and next year. There is an illegal migrant crisis at the southern border which continues to worsen — immigration is consistently among Americans’ top concerns — and left-wing social and education policies reportedly drove last week’s stunning GOP electoral victories.
Republicans won the governorship, lieutenant governorship, and the attorney general’s office in traditionally blue Virginia, while recapturing the state Assembly; the governor’s race in blue New Jersey was much tighter than expected, with GOP contender Jack Ciattarelli still refusing to concede to Democratic incumbent Gov. Phil Murphy, while a Republican truck driver upset the state’s long-serving Democratic Senate president; Republican district attorney candidates won in New York City and GOP candidates won state races as well; a blue, heavily Hispanic state district in Texas flipped to Republicans; and conservative candidates won school board elections in blue districts in Colorado.
Among the USA Today/Suffolk University survey’s results:
- “Nearly half of those surveyed, 46%, say Biden has done a worse job as president than they expected, including 16% of those who voted for him. Independents, by 7-1 (44%-6%), say he’s done worse, not better, than they expected.”
- “Nearly two-thirds of Americans, 64%, say they don’t want Biden to run for a second term in 2024. That includes 28% of Democrats. Opposition to Trump running for another term in 2024 stands at 58%, including 24% of Republicans.”
- “Vice President Kamala Harris’ approval rating is 28% – even worse than Biden’s. The poll shows that 51% disapprove of the job she’s doing. One in 5, 21%, are undecided.”
- “Americans overwhelmingly support the infrastructure bill Biden is about to sign, but they are split on the more expensive and further-reaching “Build Back Better” act being debated in Congress. Only 1 in 4 say the bill’s provisions would help them and their families.”
What’s more, according to the survey, if the election were today, Democrats would likely be destroyed; respondents said they would vote for their GOP congressional candidate over a Democratic rival by a margin of 46-38 percent, which gives Republicans a lot of headwind heading into the 2022 midterms as the party seeks to regain control over one or both chambers of Congress.
History is also not on Biden’s or the Democrats’ side. Traditionally, the party in power loses congressional seats, as Trump did in 2018 when Democrats regained control of the House (and the Senate in 2020). Next year, Republicans need only flip five seats to take control; flipping just one seat in the Senate would give Republicans a 51-49 majority.
Were that to happen, Biden’s agenda would become much more difficult to pass, which is already hard even in a Democrat-controlled Congress due to the slim majorities. GOP control would also lead to more aggressive oversight of Biden’s administration, USA Today noted.
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