OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
President Biden’s job approval numbers continue tanking, along with those of his vice president, Kamala Harris, because the issues most Americans are concerned about continuing to get worse, according to a Sunday assessment.
The disenfranchisement among voters is not just with Biden and Harris, however, but extends to the Democratic Party itself, the Washington Examiner reported.
The site notes:
Biden’s job approval rating had nosedived to near 40% as the annual holiday season commenced, with Republicans taking the lead in generic-ballot polling gauging which party voters would prefer be in charge on Capitol Hill. The corresponding changes in Democratic and GOP fortunes have coincided with skyrocketing inflation and lingering pandemic conditions that are causing anxiety and frustration among the independents and suburban Republicans whose critical votes put Biden and the Democrats in power.
Challenging economic conditions and risks from the coronavirus would pose political hurdles for any administration, as they did for former President Donald Trump. But Republican pollsters say the troubles afflicting Biden that threaten to remove congressional Democrats from power in 2022 run deeper. For voters, inflation and the pandemic are priorities. Meanwhile, they see Democrats in Washington focused on creating and expanding social programs — and fighting among themselves to do it.
“The agenda the Democrats are pushing is not the agenda the American people feel they’re dealing with,” David Winston, a GOP pollster who advises congressional Republicans, told the Examiner. “This is a more fundamental problem.”
A year after Democrats completed their takeover of Congress by winning the Senate and capturing the White House giving the party control over all levers of power, recent surveys and other data indicate that there is much disarray within the party, as voters aren’t quite sure where Democrats stand, despite the passage of two major (and expensive) pieces of legislation.
Some of the issues concerning voters include the worsening supply chain crisis which is driving up prices in an already inflationary economy; rising prices at the gas pump; concern about education issues such as the introduction of controversial curriculum including critical race theory; and a focus on climate change that is not resonating — and has never resonated — with the vast majority of the electorate.
“In the aftermath of Republican Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin’s upset victory this month in Virginia, a state the president won by more than 10 points in November, centrist Democratic think tank Third Way commissioned a series of focus groups with Biden voters in the suburbs of Richmond and Washington to find out what went wrong,” the Washington Examiner noted, adding: “What they found was startling.”
According to the memo prepared by ALG Research:
- “Our weak national brand left us vulnerable.”
- “Voters are unhappy with the direction of the country and don’t think we get it.”
- “Voters believe the economy is bad, and no amount of stats can change their mind (at least in the short term).”
- “Voters think we are focused on social issues, not the economy.”
Matt Bennett, a senior spokesman for Third Way, told the Examiner that the Democrats are in distress with no clear path to recovery. He went on to speculate that if Congress enacts Biden’s social spending program, the legislation known as “Build Back Better,” that would greatly improve the party’s prospects heading into 2022, though he didn’t specify why or how.
“We don’t know yet precisely what the Democratic brand problem is or where it comes from. Our sense is that the brand issues substantially predate Biden and are about a range of things — distrust on handling the economy and a sense that we are out of touch on some culture issues,” Bennett said, adding that Republicans have supposedly benefitted from former President Donald Trump’s leaving the Oval Office.
“The GOP brand has been given a temporary reprieve from Trump,” Bennet noted. “[It’s] not clear that congressional candidates can slip that noose as deftly as Youngkin did. But it won’t be as potent as when Trump is actually on the ballot.”