Unique among U.S. presidents, Joe Biden has had no bounce during his opening weeks in office according to the Rasmussen Poll. During the first week of his presidency, Biden drew only 48% approval (on Jan 26) compared to 59% approval for Donald Trump (on Jan 26, 2017).
Since his inauguration, the highest his job approval has been is a mediocre 53% (on Feb 15). Of the thirteen Rasmussen polls during the first weeks of his presidency, five have had his approval at only 48%, five at 50%, two polls showed a 52% approval and the Feb 15 survey was at his peak for the period of 53%.
Trump’s early ratings in Rasmussen’s polls were consistently higher. In fact, there has been no day so far in which Biden’s approval was above Trump’s on that date in 2017. (And only one day in which they were tied). Of the eighteen surveys between the day of his inauguration and March 3, 2017, Trump registered approval levels of 59% in one, 57% in one, 55% in three, 54% in one, 53% in seven, 52% in three, 51% in one and a low of 50% in one poll.
And remember that Trump’s higher ratings in his opening weeks came while he was under the cloud of the Russian meddling scandal that proved to be a hoax, with daily headlines breathlessly reporting developments that were, themselves, phony.
Biden’s poor ratings reflect the fact that he only barely won the Democratic nomination after losing primaries in the first three states. He was just never very popular. Surveys confirm that opposition to Trump was the leading factor motivating people to vote for Biden.
American politics has become so polarized that there is no longer a consensus to give the new president a chance. Biden’s ratings indicate that his 51% vote share on election day is pretty much the highest he’ll ever get in approval ratings.
Other media polls have Biden higher and Trump lower. Trump pollster John McLaughlin explains why the difference:
“The Rasmussen Reports poll is modeled by party after the previous presidential election which is why that they are more accurate. Media polls, and there are many of them, that skew the party with higher shares of Democrats and lower shares of Republicans have Biden with a much higher approval rating now and Trump with a lower rating in 2017. But those polls were skewed and wrong. Rasmussen Reports was far more accurate.”
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