On Friday’s broadcast of CNN’s “AC360,” CNN Senior Political Commentator and former Obama Adviser David Axelrod stated that President Joe Biden’s “economic approval numbers are actually quite bad, especially relative to what he’s achieved” because of political polarization and a “sense of unease” that is largely “driven by inflation” and also due to a “hangover” from the pandemic.
Host Anderson Cooper asked, “We’ve also seen other successes for the administration, the bipartisan infrastructure deal in 2021, the Inflation Reduction Act in 2022. But both of those — he got those passed, but without a substantial change in his approval ratings. Why do you think the administration has such a difficult time when it comes to public opinion?”
Axelrod responded, “First of all, I think we live in a time of deep polarization, when it’s very hard to move numbers. We have a red team and a blue team and most voters fall into one column or the other, and it’s very hard to move numbers. Secondly, I think there is a hangover…from the pandemic, that has left people unsettled. I mean, objectively, in many ways, the economy is extraordinarily strong compared to when the President took office, but there is this sense of unease — and a lot of it being driven by inflation. And so, his economic approval numbers are actually quite bad, especially relative to what he’s achieved. I think the hope is, by underlining what happened today and what happened overnight, that he can jolt those numbers a little bit. But, again, we are sitting here in June of 2023, and we’re talking about an election that’s going to happen in November of 2024. So, I think subsequent events will determine whether, in fact, he can move those numbers.”
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