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A Major Talking Point About Polling Biden vs. Trump Has Now Gone Out the Window

AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

While President Joe Biden started his presidency with high approval ratings, compared to what they are now, it wasn't entirely surprising. People were duped into voting for him over re-electing former President Donald Trump in hopes for a return to normalcy and a stark contrast to Trump, which Biden offered on the campaign trail. But then, Biden's presidency progressed, and buyer's remorse ticked way up as the American people saw how poorly our country was doing under his tone-deaf administration that clearly doesn't know what it's doing, as it seeks to blame everyone else for its problems.

When Biden's poll numbers started to tank, reports from the mainstream media were quick to point out that at least his poll numbers weren't as bad as Trump's. That can now no longer be said.

On Tuesday, NBC News came out with a damning report, highlighting how "Biden is rattled by his sinking approval ratings and is looking to regain voters’ confidence that he can provide the sure-handed leadership he promised during the campaign." 

Guy covered the report on Tuesday, with Matt also doing so on Wednesday.

According to the NBC report: 

“I don’t know what’s required here,” said Rep. James Clyburn, D-S.C., whose endorsement in the 2020 Democratic primaries helped rescue Biden’s struggling candidacy. “But I do know the poll numbers have been stuck where they are for far too long.”

...

The president has also told aides he doesn’t think enough Democrats go on television to defend him. A particular sore spot is his slumping poll numbers; he’s mystified that his approval rating has dropped to a level approaching that of his predecessor, Donald Trump, ranked by historians as one of the worst presidents in history.

“He’s now lower than Trump, and he’s really twisted about it,” another person close to the White House said.

At a meeting with advisers about a month ago, Biden was surprised to see polling that indicated he had dropped among suburban women, according to two people familiar with the meeting. An adviser said Biden gets weekly polling briefings that delve into “key demographics” and that, because he is kept apprised regularly, he didn’t have that reaction. (At a news conference in September, Biden said flatly, “I don’t look at the polls — not a joke.”)

When it comes to NBC's report that Biden said in September he doesn't look at the polls, he said as much during a press conference he held in January of this year. During that same press conference, Biden also said that he "didn't overpromise," but instead "outperformed." Biden had been in office for about a year at the time. 

It's important to note that Biden's polling numbers were poor in January, too, they've just continued to get worse to a point that not even he can ignore any longer.

RealClearPolitics (RCP) and FiveThirtyEight regularly update their average approval/disapproval ratings, based on multiple polls. According to RCP, using polling data from May 12-June 1, Biden is at a 40.7 percent approval rating and a 54.0 percent disapproval rating. RCP has Trump at an overall approval rating of 42.8 percent and a 53.4 percent disapproval rating. 

FiveThirtyEight, which was last updated on Thursday morning, similarly has Biden at a 40.8 percent approval rating and a 53.9 disapproval rating. They have a chart comparing Biden and Trump on that specific date of their presidency, which shows that around Day 480 of the presidency, Trump's numbers begin to outperform Biden's and do so consistently from there. 

Ballotpedia has an entire polling index page devoted to "Comparison of opinion polling during the Trump and Biden administrations." At the 70th week of Biden's presidency, he is at a 41 percent approval rating, while Trump was at a 42.9 percent approval rating. 

It's worth noting that the page states "President Biden's overall approval average at this point in his term is 47.1%, 6.3 percentage points higher than President Trump's average of 40.7% at this point in his term." It's important to keep in mind that Trump at least had a mostly consistent approval rating, especially when he was maligned from the start, including and especially by the mainstream media. 

Trump's approval rating was also going up while Biden's has been going down. 

The Rasmussen daily tracker has an even larger difference between Biden and Trump. The former is currently at a 41 percent rating for June 2, 2022, while Trump had a 48 percent approval rating for June 2, 2018. 

The Rasmussen tracker has Biden currently at a -27.0, based on how 46 percent strongly disapprove of his presidency as of June 2, 2022, while just 19 percent strongly approve. 

Not only are Biden's poll numbers and net approval dropping, the 30-point drop, as columnist Marc Thiessen pointed out, is the fastest drop, a milestone I covered as 2022 arrived, shortly before the president had been in office for a year. 

As Biden's presidency progresses, the numbers just get worse. 

RCP showed polls where Biden's approval ratings were in the mid- to high-50s or even 60s upon taking office. Again, he's now at a 40.7 percent approval rating. Polls showed Biden with a net approval in the teens or 20s, with polls from POLITICO/Morning Consult showing him with a +27, +24, and even +29. He's now at an average of -13.3.

FiveThirtyEight showed Biden started his presidency at an average net approval of +19.7, while he's now at -13.0

Trump also enjoyed much more support from Republican voters, while Biden's support is slipping among Democrats and other key demographics. As I covered in a VIP piece late last month, citing an AP-NORC poll conducted May 12-May 16, 2022, Biden was at just a 73 percent approval rating among adult Democrats in his own party. 

"In AP-NORC polls conducted in 2021, Biden’s approval rating among Democrats never dropped below 82%," Nicholas Riccardi wrote in his write-up for AP. 

With these polling debacles certainly spelling bad news for his party, the November midterms sure are going to be ones to watch. 

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