Biden numbers are catastrophic … and no bottom yet?
With each succeeding round of polling, President Biden’s numbers get worse. According to the latest CNN poll, Biden’s favorable rating has dropped to 39 percent. Almost two-thirds of the voting public think Biden is doing a bad job.
When viewed along partisan lines only 74 percent of Democrats approve of Biden’s performance – down from 80 percent in July. Independents stayed steady at an abysmal 36 percent approval rating and Republicans dropped from 7 to 6 percent. In terms of the direction of the country, 70 percent say things are going badly. Similarly, more than 70 percent of the public do not – repeat do not – want Biden to run for a second term.
While Democrats and team-Biden push his economic “accomplishments” as his strong suit, the people are not buying it. Since he labeled his campaign strategy “Bidenomics”, his rating in handling the economy has been falling. Fifty-eight percent of the folks back home say that Biden’s economic policies have WORSENED the situation.
In the recent FOX News poll, the story is the same. For the first time a majority of Americans (52%) believe that Biden policies have made the economy WORSE. That is up from 47 percent in June. Only 25 percent believe Biden improved the economy – with 22 percent saying he has made no difference at all.
That means that 74 percent of the people do not think Biden’s economic policies were positive or beneficial. That is an astounding number in view of Biden’s pounding on his economic “achievements” for the past year. The more he pounds, the worse his numbers get. That is because Biden is selling political propaganda and the folks back home are living the reality.
In terms of a successful marketing strategy, Biden’s Bidenomics theme is right up there with Edsel, New Coke, and Bud Lite.
Biden is underwater with the American people in almost every other category – immigration, crime, Ukraine. His highest positive rating is job creation – and even that is hovering around an unimpressive 50 percent favorable. In carrying out the responsibilities of the presidency in the best interest of the public, Biden is getting a big fat “F” from the American people.
There are other factors to be considered. What about the old working-class Ole Joe persona? That common man with great American values — and all his probably apocryphal talks with his father around the kitchen table.
It appears that a growing number of voters are seeing him as a typical Washington establishment politician. And how could they not? That working-class Joe is a myth. The real Joe has been on the public payroll all his adult life — and a major insider in Washington for 50 years. He is the quintessential creature of the swamp.
CNN poll shows that the majority of the public have significant concerns about his personal integrity. They are not buying his Sergeant Schultz’ “I know nothing” defense regarding his son Hunter’s controversial – and possibly criminal – activities.
Almost two-thirds of the public do not believe that Biden was unaware of his son’s business activities. Even worse for Biden is the fact that 48 percent of DEMOCRATS polled by CNN believe Biden has done things that are illegal — and another 18 percent believe he has acted unethically. Only 38 percent believe Biden was not involved in any way.
The reports that Hunter is about to be indicted will not help the President’s image. Biden’s “my son did nothing wrong” is sounding as hollow as his “I know nothing” defense.
While there is not yet enough evidence to prove beyond reasonable doubt that Biden was involved in Hunter’s schemes – criminal or otherwise — there is enough hard evidence in the form of phone calls, text messages, emails and whatever else is in Hunter’s laptop to raise suspicions.
Biden still has some ‘splaing to do to the special counsel regarding his illegal possession of White Documents.
Age and vitality
As bad as Biden’s numbers are regarding the issues and his personal integrity, his political Achilles Heel may be his age and vitality – with emphasis on the latter. The concern is usually expressed over his age, but it is the vitality concern that is the larger issue. Old folks at the same age have very different health conditions – physical and mental.
Defenders of Biden often note that President Trump is only three years younger. Come on, man! Anyone can see the difference. Despite being overweight, Trump is obviously in better physical condition than Biden – and has better mental acuity. Trump can be on the hustings every day – speaking extemporaneously. Biden is shuffled in and out of scripted and limited public appearances – and he avoids the press like they have Covid. And then there are those “senior moments.”
Both Biden and Trump are at the “anything can happen” stage of life. Frankly, I think they are both too old to take on the presidency for the next four years. However, in terms of completing the term without a wheelchair — and with all the marbles still in place — the odds favor Trump. That is not an endorsement, just a sense of observed reality.
The CNN poll placed the age issue as a major concern of the voters.
Seventy-Six percent say that Biden’s age is a serious issue. When asked if Biden has the stamina and sharpness to serve four more years, 74 percent say “no.” Biden attempted to address the age issue by falling on the old bromide that with age comes wisdom. That can be true – but is also can bring strokes, heart attacks, cognitive decline and dementia.
Virtually every American has experience with friends and relatives over 80. No occasional two-step or brief bike ride will assuage the public’s legitimate concerns. It is quite simple. Biden is too old, and he does not appear that he will retain sufficient mental and physical vitality to serve another four years.
If Biden cannot win on the issues, integrity or age, his only chance is the Trump issue. He put it very well when he said, “Don’t compare me to the Almighty. Compare me to the alternative.” There is some value in that argument for Biden. While 70 percent of Democrats do not want Biden to run, most Democrats will vote for him if the binary choice is him or Trump. But even making Trump the issue is not giving Biden any obvious advantage at the moment.
The head-to-head contest
When matched against specific Republican candidates, there is more very bad news for Biden. First of all, he loses to Trump 47 to 46 percent – essentially a tie within the margin-of-error. Biden ties with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis at 47 to 47 percent. He is in surprisingly tight races with most of the other GOP candidates – essentially tied within the margin of error. Former Vice President Pence inches ahead in a 46 to 44 percent race. Same with South Carolina Senator Tim Scott. Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie leads with 44 to 42 percent. Biden is a head of businessman Vivek Ramaswamy by a mere 46 to 45 percent. Ponder that. Half the voters will take almost any Republican over Biden.
One Republican candidate clearly beats Biden beyond the margin-of-error. That is former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, who topped Biden 49 to 43 percent – a comfortable six-point edge. She gained my vote after seeing her debate. Her problem, however, is securing the Republican nomination.
Biden is unlikely to improve his position on any of the issues – including the economy. In terms of integrity, Hunter’s ongoing problems will get worse and reflect more on Biden, himself, as his son goes to trial. Biden cannot beat the age issue. He will not be as well and able in future months and years as he is today. How much and how fast he will decline can be debated, but not the fact that he will.
His age problem also intersects with his choice of Vice President. Even most Democrats do not want her to ever be President. Voters fear that is exactly what would happen if Biden cannot make it through a second term.
Based on what we already know from the evidence, the Biden & Son issues will gain more gravitas. How much it will involve Biden is an unknown. Despite the Democrats’ best effort to call the Hunter issue a nothing burger, it is taking on an ominous life of its own. And most voters already believe Biden is culpable of something according to the CNN poll.
And then there is the enthusiasm factor – that intangible that gets people casting ballots, or not. In June 62 percent of Democrats were highly motivated to the Republican’s 65 percent. Since then, Democrat enthusiasm fell to 60 percent while GOP’s rose to 75 percent. A three-point gap turned into a 15-point gap in just a couple of months.
Most pundits and observers agree that Biden will be the Democrat standard bearer in 2024 unless he has a serious health setback, or he sees the writing on the wall and steps down – as did Presidents Truman and Johnson. Or … he can run and lose. The three modern presidents with comparable poll numbers at this point were Jimmy Carter, George H. W. Bush and Donald Trump – and they all lost their bid for a second term.
It still looks like Biden will be the Democrat standard bearer in 2024. However, if the polls do not improve, I would not bet the ranch on it. There is at least one understudy in the wings. Is that California Governor Gavin Newsom chaffing at the bit?
So, there ‘tis.