Bounceless Biden: ABC/Ipsos poll shows 69% feel economy getting worse

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Perhaps that’s because the economy is getting worse for the vast majority of Americans. A new ABC/Ipsos poll out over the weekend shows Joe Biden unimproved since their last survey in June despite what media outlets have tried to paint as a comeback summer. Nearly seven in ten respondents believe the economy is still getting worse despite Biden’s happy talk on gas prices, and voters are blaming Biden for it:


With the midterm elections three months away, Americans maintain a sour view on the state of the economy and are pessimistic about its future course, with President Joe Biden’s approval rating across a range of issue areas continuing to suffer, according to a new ABC News/Ipsos poll.

More than two-thirds (69%) of Americans think the nation’s economy is getting worse — the highest that measure has reached since 2008, when it was 82% in an ABC News/Washington Post poll. Currently, only 12% think the economy is getting better and 18% think it is essentially staying the same.

Americans’ views of Biden’s handling of the economic recovery remain overwhelmingly negative — and are virtually unchanged from the same poll in early June, with only 37% of Americans approving of the job the president is doing and 62% disapproving in the latest ABC News/Ipsos poll, which was conducted using Ipsos’ KnowledgePanel.

The president’s rating on inflation is even worse, with 29% of Americans saying they approve, while 69% disapprove. This number is also unchanged since June.

It’s unchanged since June despite a mainstream-media-wide narrative over the summer that Biden had hit a second wind. The passage of the so-called “Inflation Reduction Act” will no doubt spike that narrative even further this week, even past the upcoming CPI and PPI reports that will almost assuredly show inflation continuing to soar. And that might work, for a month until the next reports, as I suggested in my earlier post.


On the other hand, it might not, because 69% of Americans also happen to be correct. Real disposable personal income has shrunk for five straight quarters, which certainly feels recessionary even if we may not technically be in a recession:

In fact, with the exception of the massive sugar high of Biden’s American Rescue Plan stimulus, real disposable personal income — which is adjusted for inflation — has been in negative territory throughout Biden’s presidency. Those numbers are comparisons to the previous quarter, too, which means that this has a compounding effect. The most recent read of -0.5% on real disposable income is not from a baseline but shows a decline from the previous quarter’s -7.8%, which was a decline from the previous quarter, and so on.

In other words, Q2’s -0.5% wasn’t an improvement. It merely showed that the rate of decline slowed, but that real disposable personal income was still declining.

Small wonder, then, that voters aren’t swallowing the media’s Comeback Kid narrative for Biden. It also explains why voters still want Republicans to replace Democrats in the midterms:

The Republican Party is more trusted to handle key issues like the economy, inflation, and crime, according to the latest ABC News/Ipsos poll. This pattern holds true among those who indicate they are very enthusiastic about voting in the midterms this November. …

Roughly one-third of Americans trust Republicans to do a better job of handling key issues of the day, namely the economy, inflation, crime, and immigration. Around a quarter trust Democrats more on each of these issues.

Among the 35% of Americans who are very enthusiastic about voting in November, a similar pattern emerges. Republicans hold a double-digit advantage on trust over Democrats on these four issues.


So much for those media narratives, eh? Biden’s RCP aggregate average has bounced back over the last two months, but only to the same level it was in June. It has actually tailed off slightly in the last couple of days again, though, which hints that we may be seeing what we used to call a dead-cat bounce. Biden may have hit his floor over the last two months but he’s not coming up off of it much, and neither are his fellow Democrats. Voters see past the narratives and spin because they’re mired in the misery Biden and his team have created.

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