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How low can he go? Biden kicks off campaign with lowest approval of term

For most of his tenure, Biden's approval rating has hovered at just about 40%. He’s now at 37%.

Published: April 29, 2023 12:14am

(The Center Square) -

President Joe Biden announced earlier this week that he is running for president, but the latest polling data shows he is much less popular than when he first took over the White House.

Gallup released the survey data, which put Biden's approval rating at 37%, the lowest point since he became president.

"Only Ronald Reagan in early 1983 had a lower ninth-quarter average among elected post-World War II presidents," Gallup said. "Reagan’s low ratings came during a period when the unemployment rate exceeded 10% after the 1981-1982 economic recession."

For most of his tenure, Biden's approval rating has hovered at just about 40%.

"Jimmy Carter and Donald Trump had slightly better approval ratings than Biden and Reagan; both were just above 40%," Gallup said. "Four presidents, including George H.W. Bush, Dwight Eisenhower, John Kennedy and George W. Bush, averaged better than 60% approval during their ninth quarters in office."

Biden came into office with a 57% approval rating that has steadily dropped, seeing a particular downturn after the chaotic and deadly withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan.

Meanwhile, a recent Emerson College poll found that Biden may have a real Democratic contender. Incumbent presidents rarely have serious primary challengers from their own party, but Biden's age, low polling, and looming scandals could fuel Robert Kennedy Jr., who is polling with about a fifth of Democratic voters' support.

RFK Jr. is an author and environmental lawyer known for challenging the COVID-19 vaccines.

"The share of Democratic voters who think Biden should be the nominee has decreased six points since February, from 71% to 65%," Emerson said.

Emerson has Biden's approval rating slightly higher, at 41%, but the group said he is losing support from Independents.

“Driving Biden’s lower approval this month is independent voters, 37% of whom approved of the president in February, which has dropped to 30% this month,” said Spencer Kimball, executive director of Emerson College Polling.

It remains to be seen whether Biden's announcement this week will rally donors and support from Democrats. Former President Trump, the current Republican 2024 frontrunner, wasted no time in attacking Biden this week as the two draw closer to a potential presidential campaign rematch.

“You could take the five worst presidents in American history, and put them together, and they would not have done the damage Joe Biden has done to our nation in just a few short years,” Trump said in his video response to Biden's announcement on TruthSocial. “Not even close."

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