If any of President Biden’s panicked political advisers asked each other how much lower his approval rating could go following a dismal 38 percent in a USA Today/Suffolk University survey in early November, ABC News and Ipsos have provided them an answer: A lot lower.
At least for Biden’s handling of a couple of issues, especially runaway inflation.
A Dec. 10-11 poll jointly conducted by ABC News and Ipsos found that just 28 percent of respondents thought that Biden’s handling of inflation has been good; 69 percent, meanwhile, did not think so.
The survey results on what has become the No. 1 issue of concern for voters comes as the Labor Department announced on Friday that the Consumer Price Index showed that inflation had risen 6.8 percent from November 2020, which is the highest rate of increase since Ronald Reagan was dealing with the issue in 1982.
And while 53 percent believe Biden is handling the COVID-19 pandemic sufficiently — perhaps because the media isn’t beating him up on the issue daily like they did President Trump — just 40 percent of respondents approve of his handling of the economy overall.
Meanwhile, on other important issues, the president failed to reach 50 percent approval.
For instance, on gun violence, just one-in-three respondents, or 33 percent, gave Biden high marks, while 66 percent disapproved. On crime generally, Biden gets 36 percent approval in the survey and a 61 percent disapproval rating. Fifty-one percent disapproved of his handling of climate change while 46 percent approved, though, for this question, it isn’t clear what policies respondents believe are acceptable or unacceptable.
In last month’s USA Today survey, Biden’s overall job approval had sunk to 38 percent, though it was much worse for his second-in-command: Vice President Kamala Harris’ approval was the same as Biden’s handling of the economy, 28 percent.
“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,” USA Today reported.
And this: “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,” USA Today reported.
Biden’s approval for all issues Americans care most about have fallen dramatically since he took office in January, including his overall approval rating.
The ABC News/Ipsos poll, for instance, found in July that Biden’s COVID approval stood 10 points higher at 63 percent, which made reflect a negative attitude towards his vaccine mandate that is currently failing to pass constitutional muster in federal courts. His economic approval rating was 13 points higher at 53 percent in July, even as price increases were already happening. And his approval rating on crime, generally, and gun violence specifically have both fallen as well (3 and 4 points, respectively).
The survey also sought to gauge Americans’ thoughts on at least one foreign policy issue — Russia — and here, too, just a bare plurality (42 percent) voiced approval, compared with 55 percent who disapproved. When respondents were asked how much confidence they had in Biden to negotiate with his counterpart, President Vladimir Putin, only 38 percent answered “a great deal” or “a good amount.”
Putin, at the moment, has massed somewhere close to 90,000 troops along Ukraine’s eastern border.
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