A new poll shows that President Joe Biden’s job approval rating is now lower than that of several of his top deputies, including Vice President Kamala Harris and Chief Medical Advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci.
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GOP House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy is also ranked near the bottom of the list of federal officials.
In a Gallup poll taken from December 1 to December, respondents ranked Biden ninth out of 11 federal leaders according to his 43 percent approval rating.
Although his disapproval rating is still better than Harris’ 54-point negative job rating, it is still lower than his.
At 40 percent and 34 percent respectively, Nancy Pelosi and Mitch McConnell are the only other Republicans below the president.
John Roberts, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, is ranked at the top. American voters approve of the job he’s doing leading the high court six out of ten times.
It is Roberts’s first term overseeing the Supreme Court with his three conservative justices, and he is overseeing it during one of the most politically charged terms in our nation’s history.
Roe v. Wade was challenged in court earlier this month, the most significant high court challenge in 30 years.
The court’s conservative majority has put a lot of public pressure on the chief justice, who was appointed by George W. Bush.
In addition, he is the only candidate whom both Republican and Democratic majorities support.
Roberts has a 53 percent approval rating, followed by Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell. Late last month, Biden re-nominated Powell to lead the Fed.
Fauci, despite becoming a hyper-politicized figure following the Coronavirus pandemic, is third.
Fauci has faced criticism from Republican elected officials but still remains one of the most trusted sources of pandemic information, even gaining superstar status in 2020 when he made a bobble head in his image and threw out the first pitch at the first baseball game between the Nationals and Yankees in the new season.
Fauci’s approval rating reflects these polarized opinions – 85 percent of Democrats approve of him, while only 19 percent of Republicans do.
There were also 49 percent approval ratings for two of Biden’s top Cabinet officials, Blinken and Attorney General Merrick Garland.
Although McCarty is the most popular Congressional leader on the list, his 46 percent approval rating to 49 percent disapproval reflects Americans’ dissatisfaction with the House and Senate as a whole.
However, his strong showing among Independents is yet another bad sign for Democrats hoping to keep their slim majority in Congress in the 2022 midterm elections.
Harris, who struggles with disapproval numbers of her own, puts herself just ahead of Biden, tied with Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer with an approval rating of 44 percent.
A more significant number of voters disapprove of Schumer, McConnell, Harris and Pelosi, in addition to the 51 percent who dislike Biden’s job performance.
Gallup’s approval rating for Biden is comparable to how FiveThirtyEight rates him.
Mid-December saw a small rise in the president’s job rating, which has been steadily declining.
As soon as he delivered his speech on the Omicron variant, which quickly plunged the country into a second COVID-19 wave, it dropped back to 43.
In announcing his plan last week to send 500 million COVID tests to Americans’ homes in January, Biden was criticized for being too late, after a spike in cases across the country was already forcing people to wait in long lines for the tests and then days for the results.
When the 500 million arrive, health experts and local leaders in virus hotspots said they would quickly run out. The government should have made them available weeks ago.
As the president admitted, he wished he’d come up with the idea earlier, though the next day a report appeared that the White House rejected a plan presented by medical experts to help avoid high infection rates.
COVID test production was to be ramped up to more than 700 million per month under that plan.
On Monday, Biden will talk with governors about how to combat the Omicron variant, now the dominant strain in the country, before heading to Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.
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Anthony Fabrizio, a Republican pollster who conducted surveys for Trump’s 2016 and 2020 campaigns, noted Biden’s “absolute collapse of support among independents, which provided him with his majority in 2020,” as well as his “collapse among Hispanic voters.”
Approval ratings measure a president’s popularity nationwide and clout in Washington. Moreover, Biden’s subpar numbers are no help for the president in passing his agenda’s key initiatives, such as his party’s human infrastructure bill and climate change fighting spending package, as well as Democrats’ comprehensive election and campaign finance reform bill.
Additionally, the approval rating of the president has long been a widely watched indicator moving into the 2020 midterms, and Biden’s declining numbers could spell trouble for Democrats trying to hold on to their razor-thin majorities in the House and Senate.
Observing the president’s appeal to independents and Hispanic voters, Fabrizio said, “From a voter group perspective, those are two significant shifts which mean the difference between the Democrats losing a handful of House seats or a wave that just takes them out of 40 seats or more.”