Poll results these days are generally negative for Democrats. Joe Biden’s approval rating has dropped precipitously during the less than ten months he has been in office, and is well below 50% in all current polls that I am aware of. This Washington Post / ABC News poll is getting a lot of attention. Poll finds Biden 41% / 53% underwater; no surprises there.
But the most surprising feature of the poll is the general question in Congress: If the elections for the United States House of Representatives were held today, would you vote for (or lean towards) the Republican or Democrat candidate? Among registered voters, the GOP has an extraordinary ten-point lead, from 51% to 41%. This is the largest pro-GOP margin since WaPo / ABC started asking the question 40 years ago.
One caveat, though: in this poll, respondents were 27 percent Democrats, 26 percent Republicans, and 37 percent independent. Many people may have changed sides – I hope – but as recently as September, the party affiliation of those interviewed in the same poll was 30% Democrats and 24% Republicans. So, at least in part, Republicans’ extraordinary ten-point margin reflects more Republicans surveyed.
However, it’s hard for Democrats to find much good news in a recent poll. Their real problem is that whatever issue voters focus on most – rising cost of living, crime, critical racial theory in schools, supply chain problems, the nonexistent southern border or the incompetent foreign policy – unlikely to get much better between now and next October.
The Democrats hope that the approval of their mega bills will increase their (and Biden’s) popularity. This is a possibility, since such measures are rated quite well, at least when they are rated positively in the survey questions. (For example, WaPo / ABC asked “Do you support or oppose the federal government that spends a trillion dollars on roads, bridges and other infrastructure,” when only about a quarter of that bill actually goes to infrastructure.) But voter views on these spending accounts are mixed at best, as most understand they will increase inflation, and in this poll, 59% say they are concerned that Biden “will do too much to increase size and role. of government in US society “.
The 2022 election is obviously a long way off, but the tea leaves don’t look good for the Democrats right now. And worse still, it’s hard to see how they can perform a course correction that will significantly increase their prospects. I’m basically in the mode of hoping that the pace of the bad news will slow down.