There was a lot of oohing and aahing from the pundit class over a Quinnipiac poll released earlier this month showing President Biden's job approval rating sinking to 38 percent, with a 53 percent majority disapproving. We covered it – noting Quinnipiac's blue tint in recent years – just as we've covered other polling data and developments that haven't looked great for Biden and his party in recent months. Leah highlighted the brand new Q-poll finding no bounce-back for POTUS, who is mired at (37/52) approval in the latest numbers, with just 28 percent of independents approving of Biden's presidential job performance. But were these outliers? Perhaps not. Another national survey of voters conducted by a well-respected pollster finds strikingly similar results:
New @jaselzer poll is tough for Biden: 37% approval rating; 50% disapprove.— Christopher Cadelago (@ccadelago) October 20, 2021
Immigration (27% approve; 58% disapprove); economy (36% approve; 53% disapprove)
36% of Americans believe the economy will be in a stronger position 12 months from now – an 11-point drop from March 2021 https://t.co/z4qmvxhOIN
Among independents? Twenty-eight percent approval, precisely the same as the Q-poll measured. For reference, this is lower than President Trump's approval rating at this point in his presidency. Biden, who has the support of most of the media, started with a fairly robust approval rating – which Trump never enjoyed, having been deeply polarizing from the start. I'd love to meet the 27 percent who approve of Biden's handling of immigration, which has been a breathtaking debacle:
Staggering.— Guy Benson (@guypbenson) October 20, 2021
And that figure doesn’t include ~400,000 got-always. Add those in & the total well exceeds double the population of Joe Biden’s home state. https://t.co/T40c6RJSvg
The September figures are reportedly going to come in close to 200,000 border encounters again (excluding tens of thousands of got-aways), with October expected to be worse. No wonder the White House has finally decided to reinstate the successful "Remain in Mexico" policy that they so idiotically terminated upon Biden taking office. They were far more concerned with projecting anti-Trumpness than putting good policy and American interests first. It seems they've been burned badly enough, and are hurting enough politically, that they've been forced into a reversal by reality itself – and are willing to risk the ire ("we're done") of the activist class. Biden's standing on the economy must be even more worrisome to Democrats:
“In a new POLITICO/Morning Consult poll, 62% of American voters say the administration’s policies are either somewhat or very responsible for increasing inflation, including 41% of Democrats, 61% of independent voters and 85% of Republicans.” https://t.co/0z4MBnxTLz— Josh Kraushaar (@HotlineJosh) October 20, 2021
Republican-aligned pollster Kristen Soltis Anderson reviews some of the red flags:
The Biden administration is struggling with voters as of late, and disappointment in the state of the economy is a major piece of this dynamic. The most recent Grinnell College poll, conducted by legendary pollster Ann Selzer, shows Biden’s approval rating at 37% . Notably, Biden’s job approval on the economy tracks right along with his overall approval, at a relatively poor 36%...While some people liked the Trump economy but didn’t love Trump himself, how people feel about the economy under Biden seems very closely tied to how they feel about Biden in general. And as much as the Biden team is treating America’s economic anxieties somewhat dismissively (no, this isn’t just about people mad that their treadmill is coming late ), the threat of “stagflation” — economic stagnation paired with inflation — does loom. This week, the Atlanta Fed projected GDP growth for the year to be fairly dismal. Unemployment is below 5% due to a huge number of people having left the workforce altogether. And some of those who claimed earlier this year that inflation would be “transitory” are changing their tune as supply-chain problems are making it harder to meet consumer demand...at the moment, Americans do not seem thrilled with what they see when they get to the grocery store or the gas pump — and they aren’t sure Democrats have the right answers.
Perhaps they're not sure that Democrats have the right answers because with inflation biting Americans' finances, Democrats are proposing trillions in new spending – and with overall economic performance missing expectations, Democrats are proposing raising taxes on job creators. Politico reports on a recent internal Democratic presentation that sounded the alarm about the party's precarious electoral position:
In a private presentation to allies this week, Senate Democrats’ main super PAC offered ominous warnings about the political climate the party faces. President Joe Biden’s numbers across Senate battlegrounds have eroded dramatically in recent months, according to a summary of the poll for the Senate Majority PAC, the group aligned with Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer. Making matters worse, Biden is struggling with so-called persuadable voters — those who are on the fence but could be convinced to vote Democratic...a majority of voters (53 percent) say the economy has gotten worse while just 30 percent of voters say it’s improved, the poll showed. Perhaps more troubling for Biden and Democrats, who are trying to maintain their razor-thin Senate majority in 2022, is the pessimistic view of the “persuadable” camp. Just 18 percent of those voters say the economy is getting better.
This internal polling found Biden's approval in Senate battleground states at (-11), compared to (+6) in May. "Among persuadable targets, however, just 27 percent say they approve of the job the president is doing while 57 percent disapprove," the story adds. It goes on:
“We are sleepwalking. We are so focused on getting these deals done, but in the grand scheme of it we have to be focused on Republicans. That’s the key here. They’re getting a free pass,” said one Democrat who was shown the numbers. “It’s going to be really rough, and I really worry about some of our senators.” The poll was conducted among voters in Senate battleground states: Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Florida, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Georgia and Nevada. It was presented to consultants and allied organizations. A person who obtained the slides of the presentation said they did not believe White House officials attended this particular session. “The tenor was straight forward and focused, but it was clear that there is reason to be concerned,” the source said...Overall, the survey paints a bleak picture for Democrats, who have struggled to get credit for the economic improvements since taking power and then winning a pair of Senate seats in Georgia. Inflation concerns topped the list of the most pressing economic issue, with 56 percent of persuadable voters listing it as the top priority.
I'm not a political messaging guru, but it does seem to me that it may not be in the Democrats' best interests for the White House Press Secretary to dismiss supply chain pain as people whining about delayed delivery of treadmills, or for the White House Chief of Staff to approvingly amplify spin downplaying inflation as a "high class" problem. But what do I know? I'll leave you with this, which is worth the read:
All one must do is respond to any criticisms with an emphatic, “No, you absolute rotter, that isn’t happening at all; and if it is happening, it’s not too bad; and if it is bad, it won’t be bad for long; and if it is bad for long, that’ll be your fault.” https://t.co/NAuLQmMJfn— Charles C. W. Cooke (@charlescwcooke) October 19, 2021