Amy Walter, The Cook Political Report:
A year-and-a-half in.
And I also want to put this into context, Judy. I mean, this is one poll. But if you look at an average of all the polls, the president’s overall approval rating now at 38 percent. It is the lowest approval rating we have seen at a president at this point in his term going all the way back to Eisenhower.
So this is quite — for Democrats, not a very good milestone, for the president, not a great milestone. Why does he get there? You listed all of those reasons in your opener, the economy, the mass shootings. COVID, now we have a sudden resurgence of a new variant. It feels as if, one, things are sort of out of control, and, two, the president not really feeling — people not feeling like he has his hand firmly on the steering wheel.
He was elected in part by saying, I’m going to help us get away from or at least navigate us through the chaos. Now it feels like the chaos is still controlling us as a country, and the president feels to many people like he’s a step behind.
For Democrats, the frustration is about a president they don’t feel is taking it to Republicans hard enough. I talk to a lot of Democrats who say, we want to see the president fight harder against Republicans like Mitch McConnell, not let him drive the agenda.
And for independent voters, I do think it comes to this sense of they just feel overwhelmed by the economy and how much these day-to-day increases in everything from groceries to rent to gas has impacted their lives.