Poor first Biden approval poll.

President Biden’s first approval rating from Rasmussen has 48% approving, and 45% disapproving.

My hunch is that this poll is an outlier. I don’t tend to buy into scepticism around polling, but Rasmussen has had consistently higher ratings for Trump than any other pollster, and seems to have overshot in terms of trying to undo anti-Trump bias embedded in polls for one reason for another, and basically imbedded anti-Democrat bias instead.
Still, if accurate, this is a historically poor first rating for a new President. Obama opened in the 80s, as did Clinton.

The second Bush opened in the 70s, and even Trump opened on 56% on one poll (his highest ever rating I believe).

This speaks to deep division, and the fact people clearly didn’t vote for Biden and the Democrats; they voted against Trump.

I would have expected something between 55%-62% as a solid first approval percentage for Biden, and this may yet be the case when other pollsters dip in. If an outlier, this is irrelevant, but if consistent, this is, as I say, horrendous by the standards of any Presidency in living memory.

Biden’s popularity will likely climb over the coming months, as the administration gets a bump from tackling the pandemic, with such favourable comparisons, no matter what they do, from the Trump administration ready to be made.

If not, then America may have proven itself to be ungovernable, with the days of Presidents cracking 50% in opinion polls behind us, as a symptom of chronic polarisation in US politics.

Biden is a very inoffensive figure for a solid majority of voters. He doesn’t stoke up the culture war wage, since he isn’t a woman or a POC, which neuters the bigoted attacks from the right that propelled perpetual rage towards Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. So if he can’t stabilise his approval ratings at such an early stage of his Presidency, I don’t think any candidate can.

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Toby Lipatti-Mesme

Insightful and innovative UK journalism and commentary, from Toby Lipatti-Mesme.