As we head into next year’s midterm election more and more Democrats are getting nervous about President Biden’s declining approval rating and how it will inevitably affect races throughout the country, especially in battleground states. President Biden’s inability to address multiple crises like the botched Afghanistan withdrawal, Covid-19, and the border has left many Democrats and independent voters questioning who they’ll entrust their vote with next.
According to Townhall:
In a focus group last week, Pennsylvania Democrats one after another articulated the issue vexing top White House aides, party operatives in Virginia and voters in Georgia: Why isn’t President Joe Biden’s diminished job rating rebounding? All nine participants from Tuesday’s session gave Biden C- grades or lower. And their answers circled back to a similar point: The pandemic and the many ways it continues to hinder normal life is souring their views of Biden. One woman said she wanted to buy a car but supply chain issues were delaying new shipments to the dealership. A man complained about understaffed restaurants. “There is a malaise,” said Sarah Longwell, a moderate Republican strategist who became a vocal supporter of Biden in 2020, and led the focus group of Democratic voters. “People don’t feel like their lives have been improved. They did sort of feel that promises aren’t being kept.”
…Biden’s standing with Americans has plummeted, with his average approval rating plunging by nearly 15 points since late June. He’s seen a drop among Democrats and even more with Republicans, but the decline has been particularly steep among independent voters…Longwell said she was struck by how similar the concerns of Democrats sounded to Republicans, and also by how little Democrats in her surveys blame Republicans for standing in Biden’s way. It’s a point echoed by nearly a dozen strategists who have compiled or reviewed research into Biden’s precipitous decline…In interviews in the swing state of Georgia and focus groups conducted in other battlegrounds, most Democratic base voters echoed those concerns…In Georgia, Democrats said they remained confused and upset by Biden’s decision-making on Afghanistan, migrants at the border, and the intraparty feuding around his economic agenda. “Disappointed” was a word used by most of the Black and white voters who spoke to POLITICO in the metro Atlanta area when describing Biden’s time in office. But none said they were prepared to abandon Democrats in 2022 and 2024.
These are all Democratic voters, mind you. As for that final sentence in the excerpt, that’s just fine by Republicans. They don’t need core Democratic base voters to switch parties. They need independents to sour on Team Blue (like this), for disaffected centrist/right-leaners to return to the fold, and for their own core voters to turn out. If those things happen, and partisan Democrats remain mired in a “disappointed” “malaise,” that’s a recipe for a brutal midterm cycle. There’s still time for Democrats to right the ship before 2022, though it won’t be easy, but the concern is more immediate for Democrats in Virginia.
Republicans have made it clear they’re prepared to stop at nothing to win back the House next year and so far President Biden’s inability to lead the country is providing more than enough ammunition to win.