Biden disapproval high, voters blame him on economy: CNBC poll
U.S. President Joe Biden arrives aboard Air Force One at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, United States, January 3, 2022.
Jonathan Ernst | Reuters
President Joe Biden’s disapproval rating reached a new high in December as more voters signaled their dissatisfaction with his administration’s oversight of the economy and the Covid-19 pandemic.
Fifty-six percent of voters now say they disapprove of the job Biden is doing, his presidency’s worst reading as he nears the end of his first year in office, according to new CNBC / Change Research polls. Previous polls in the series have shown Biden’s disapproval rate to be 54% in early September and 49% in April.
Biden’s approval rating is now 44%, down from 46% in September and 51% in April.
The latest sign of trouble for Biden comes as his administration seeks to tackle a wide range of economic and political issues ahead of the 2022 midterm elections, which will decide the balance of power in Congress.
The White House scrambles to allay fears over accelerating prices and inflation, resurrect President Build Back Better climate and family legislation, and rejuvenate the nation’s public health response as the omicron variant leads to a new peak in Covid cases.
Frustrations with the economy are the main culprit behind Biden’s declining popularity, as nearly every demographic has declared him their No.1 problem.
The economy was the top priority for men and women, all age groups, Latino and white voters, and those with and without a college education. Black respondents, who named racism their top priority, said the economy came in second.
Sixty percent of 1,895 survey respondents said they disapproved of Biden’s handling of the economy, marking a six-point drop in approval from September.
On personal economic issues, voters are even more likely to criticize the president. Some 72% disapprove of his handling of everyday property prices, while 66% disapprove of his efforts to help their wallets.
Disconnection from markets, economy
Biden also scored poorly on issues that voters are likely to say are doing well.
For example, most people who said they plan to vote midway through 2022 say the US stock market is doing “excellent” or “good”, while only 46% say it is doing “well”. not so good “or” less good “.
But when asked whether they approve or disapprove of Biden’s handling of the market, only 44% said they strongly or somewhat approved, compared with 56% who disapproved somewhat or strongly.
In fact, a larger percentage of respondents said they thought the U.S. stock market was doing worse than the year before than those who said it was doing better.
These opinions, collected from December 17-20, run counter to what has been one of the best years on the market in decades. The three major US stock indexes posted massive double-digit gains in 2021 from their historical annual average of around 7% or 8%.
The S&P 500 ended the year up 26.89% and posted a record close at least once a month. The broad market index hit 70 closing records in 2021, the second-highest annual total behind the 77 closing highs in 1995.
All 11 sectors ended 2021 higher, with energy and real estate posting the best returns. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 18.73% and the Nasdaq Composite climbed 21.4%.
Biden’s inability to take credit for one of the best stock market years in living memory is symptomatic of a bigger problem for Democrats in 2022: The party is failing to convince voters that the things are better than 12 months ago.
The unemployment rate is down to 4.2% from 6.3%, the average hourly wage is up 4.8%, and 243 million people (or 73% of the US population) have received at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine against 6 million who had received one in early January 2021.
This failure to turn improving economic statistics into popular support adds pressure for any Democrat facing a mid-term challenge from Republicans who will decide whether Democrats retain their slim majority in the House and Senate.
While the president’s party typically loses seats in Congress in the first-term election, current polls on Biden and the Democrats suggest they could face a rout in November.
Perhaps this is because members of both parties are increasingly frustrated with inflation.
Some 84% of those polled said the prices they saw for everyday consumer goods were higher than a year ago, while only 19% said they earned more income during the same period. And only 23% say they think inflation is starting to go down or will start to go down soon.
Respondents tend to blame Biden (38%) for price increases from the global pandemic (26%) or businesses (23%). For their part, Democrats say the global pandemic has caused the current inflationary surge and will subside once the supply chain disruptions are resolved.
But voter dissatisfaction is starting to spread outside the economic arena.
Asked to give the Biden administration an alphabetical note on both how it manages health care costs and rising wages, Democrats gave the president two C’s, but a B’s on the economy in his outfit.
The Independents gave Biden a D on each question, while the Republicans gave the president a failing rating on all levels minus the stock market, where they gave him a D.
Moreover, a majority of 55% of those polled said they disapproved of the president’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic, a sign that Biden is struggling in an area where he previously excelled.
A separate survey conducted by CNBC in December showed only 46% approve of his work on the virus compared to 48% who disapprove. This April version of that survey showed that 62% of Americans polled approved of Biden’s handling of the pandemic.
Change Research has noted that the worsening of the president’s approval ratings on Covid is likely due to an increase in voters who believe the White House has not gone far enough on vaccination mandates.
When it comes to how the Biden administration is handling the virus, 50% of those polled say the White House has gone too far, 24% say it hasn’t gone far enough, and 26% think it has gone too far. did a good job.
Biden’s drop in Covid-related approval numbers comes as the number of new coronavirus cases skyrockets across the country and tests the president’s campaign commitment to do a better job of managing the disease.