Oh, where are you, Joe?

Alexey Naumov

Joe Biden’s approval rating dropped to 50% for the first time, according to a Gallup poll. Among the reasons and rampant coronavirus strain “delta”, and inflation, and problems with inter-party interaction, which Mr. Biden promised to establish. At the same time, it is obvious that it will not be easy for the President of the United States to restore the previous rating – there are no easy solutions to any of the problems that plague him and the country.

Joe Biden is loved by half the country. According to a Gallup poll conducted from July 6 to 21, the president’s approval rating dropped to a record low for him: 50%, although only a month ago it was quite a respectable 56%. Accordingly, his disapproval rating rose to 45%. 5% of Americans found it difficult to answer.

The rate of 50% is what is called the “average temperature in the hospital.”

Joe Biden is supported by the overwhelming majority of Democrats – 90%.

At the same time, the most powerful party split that has been characteristic of American politics in recent years remains: the president is supported by only 12% of Republicans. The level of support for the head of state among voters without fixed party preferences for the first time dropped below half – to 48%.

In general, for the second quarter of the presidency (from April 20 to July 19), Mr. Biden’s approval rating looks acceptable. Thus, the second quarter of Bill Clinton was positively assessed by 44%, Donald Trump – 38.8%. At that time, George W. Bush Jr. had a higher rating – 55.8% and Barack Obama – 62%.

Joe Biden’s more distant predecessors, who served as president from the 1950s to the 1980s, performed more impressively, with no president falling below 61% in the second quarter.

Nonetheless, support for Joe Biden among Democrats remains significant, and support among voters without specific party preferences remains higher than Donald Trump ever had.

However, the negative dynamics, namely the decrease in the rating by 6%, is an alarming signal for Joe Biden. This means that dissatisfaction is growing among citizens. One of the main problems, without a doubt, can be called the epidemic of the coronavirus, namely the “delta” strain . On average, over 43.5 thousand cases of COVID-19 were recorded in the United States over the past week. Against the backdrop of a mass vaccination campaign, this is much lower than the record 200-300 thousand daily, but the current figures are 65% higher than the week before, and almost three times higher than just two weeks ago.

There are two reasons for this growth: firstly, a more contagious strain “delta” is spreading in the country, which appeared in India even before the start of mass vaccination.

Secondly, the vaccination process in the United States itself has slowed down: if in April about 3 million injections were given daily, now the authorities report only half a million injections of the vaccine every day. In addition, the brunt of the pandemic was borne by states where vaccination rates are not keeping pace with the federal level – in particular, Louisiana, Arkansas, Missouri, Florida and Nevada – there are about twice as many cases per thousand people as the national average. For comparison: in the United States, at least one vaccination was received by 65.9% of the population, and in Louisiana – only 47.7%.

The number of hospitalizations has also increased by 32%, but the number of deaths has grown very slightly and remains a record low for the entire pandemic: on average, 267 people die per day. This is due to the fact that almost all retirees in the United States are vaccinated. It is noteworthy that 97% of all hospitalized and 99.5% of all deaths from coronavirus were not vaccinated. Both the US President and the country’s medical authorities call the current situation a “pandemic among the unvaccinated.”

The second problem is inflation.

In the United States, prices are rising: grain prices have almost doubled, beef – by 41.4%, vegetable oil – by a third, gasoline – by 45% (from record lows last year). Cars, air flights, hotel rooms are becoming more expensive. In June, the consumer price index in the United States showed a record increase in 13 years, while prices rose by an average of 5.4% over the year. The US media is already telling consumers how to adapt to the new reality, when the usual large packages of breakfast powder or ice cream are getting smaller, but the price remains the same – and reminds them of the term shrinkflation.

Finally, the presidential ratings are dragged down by the lack of inter-party interaction, which Joe Biden promised to achieve while still participating in the presidential race. Last week, Republicans voted against a bipartisan compromise plan for massive investments in infrastructure. Recall that two projects are being considered at the same time: a compromise option for $ 1.2 trillion and a large-scale project proposed by Joe Biden, where it is planned to spend $ 3.5 trillion for the same purposes, which is unlikely to find the support of the Republicans. It included, among other things, the costs of combating climate change and improving the public health system.

And if a compromise on infrastructure is possible, then an improvement in the situation with inflation and coronavirus remains questionable: prices continue to rise, and unvaccinated Americans are in no hurry to vaccinate.

In addition, an increase in support is possible only from Democrats and voters without fixed party preferences: Republicans remain loyal to Donald Trump and Joe Biden are unlikely to support. Over the weekend, Mr Trump himself harshly criticized the replacement.

“Somehow they do not blame Biden for anything, including the fact that the virus unexpectedly returns and burns out countries around the world. Only recently it seemed that everything would be fine, but something no one says that it is Biden (to blame –  “Kommersant” ). Someone says it’s his fault? ” – he scolded the American press. “Joe Biden and the Radical Democrats are destroying our country. I don’t even believe it’s him. I don’t think Joe even understands where the hell he is, ”he laughed at the current president.

The Republican was not shy in expressions: he said that the United States is gradually becoming a communist country, having overcome even the stage of socialism. He called the Democratic New Green Deal, which would invest in renewable energy, the New Green Shit. “What happened to the cows? They will deal with all the cows! People are next! ” – exclaimed the former president, hinting at the decisive contribution of cows to the production of greenhouse gases. He also criticized former presidential contender Hillary Clinton (for “inventing a fake about the Russians”) and expressed confidence that he defeated Joe Biden in the last election. It was hard to find Joe Biden’s supporters who could improve his rating among the jubilant crowd shouting the old slogan “Behind her bars!” To Ms. Clinton.