The recent McLaughlin June national poll of likely voters saw optimism, as well as political support, for President Biden and his policies wane. This month, Biden’s slide among these voters continues.
In June, 47% of likely voters said the United States was headed in the right direction while 48% thought it was on the wrong track.
But in our newest poll of 1,000 likely voters, surveyed from July 29 to August 3, the majority of likely voters, or 53%, say that the country is headed on the wrong track.
Only 42% of likely voters say the U.S. is headed in the right direction.
Since June, pessimism has shifted most significantly among voters who would likely be in the Democrats' base.
As the results show, those who believe we are going in "the right direction" are shrinking, while those who believe we are on "the wrong track" are increasing in key demographics:
- Moderates from 54% -39% to 45%-46%,
- Hispanics from 60%-34% to 43%-54%,
- Voters under age 55 from 57%-36% to 44%-49%,
- Voters who are single from 56%-36% to 42%-48%,
- And voters who live in urban areas from 64%-32% to 49%-45%.
Likewise, voters preference for a generic ballot of Congressional Republicans vs. Democratics has improved slightly for the GOP. Forty-eight percent of voters favor the Republicans, while 46% favor the Democrats.
This is due to slight improvements by Republicans among Independents, going from a near even tie of 40%-39% for the two parties, to a 45%-34% Republican lead over the Democratis. Republicans also improved among moderates, decreasing the disparity from 33%-52% to a closer 35%-51%.
President Biden’s job rating and favorable ratings continue to erode as the perception of the country’s direction continues to deteriorate. This has occurred in spite of continued biased, favorable coverage from Big Media and Big Tech.
President Biden’s job approval rating in June was 55%, while 44% of survey participants disapproved. Now, it’s 54% approve to 45% disapprove.
When it comes to Biden’s disapproval rating, the intensity is on the side of "negative."
Thirty-four percent strongly disapprove, while only 29% strongly approve of the president’s job performance.
Additionally, like his presidential policies, Biden’s personal favorability rating is also worsening.
Our August poll indicates that his personal favorability rating is closing from a 54% favorable-45% unfavorable rating found in June, to a 52% favorable-47% unfavorable in August.
Vice President Kamala Harris’ favorable to unfavorable rating--incredibly--has not changed during the past four months. Her rating remains a very polarized 47%-48%.
Democratic Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s favorable to unfavorable rating has improved slightly, from a dismal 33% favorable-58% unfavorable rating to a slightly less dismal, 38% favorable-55% unfavorable rating.
Among the 6% of all voters who are undecided on their generic ballot for Congress, Speaker Pelosi is only 20% favorable-58% unfavorable.
Another interesting aspect found in our latest poll is that likely voters still prefer free market capitalism over big government socialism.
Fifty-nine percent of those who took the poll approve of capitalism, 16% disapprove of capitalism, with 25% are not sure where they stand on capitalism vs. socialism.
Still, the plurality of voters, 49%, say that they prefer smaller government with fewer services. Thirty-seven percent in our poll say they prefer larger government with many services.
This ratio has been consistent since last March, but it reflects a historic narrowing of that voters have preferred smaller government over larger government. This has occurred since the Covid pandemic hit the U.S. in 2020.
To that extent, only two issues out of 16 potential options received double digit support as a "leading issue" in America that was personally "most important" to likely voters; Stopping the spread of Covid was the top issue at 16%, and fixing immigration was the second most important issue with 11% listing that.
Restoring honesty and integrity in Washington was third at 9%.
Social issues, which tend to favor Democrats, was tied with economic issues, which tend to favor Republicans, at 24%.
Only 5% cited re-examining the 2020 election as a leading issue.
We found that the vast majority of the voters see issues that affect them personally today, or will in the future, as the most important to them.
It should be noted that economic concerns also appear to be rising. The majority of likely voters, 50%, say that the country is still in recession.
And, unlike June where only 41% of likely voters thought the economy was getting worse, 49% of likely voters now say that the economy is getting worse. Just 44% of survey participants said the economy is getting better.
This is the first time since March that the voters believe the economy is getting worse rather than better.
In terms of likely voters' expectations for President Biden's political future, the majority of voters, 62%, knowing that President Biden is 78 years old and will be at 82 at the end of his term, say that it is likely that Kamala Harris will be the president before the end of Joe Biden’s term.
Only 32% say that scenario is not likely.
Broken down between Biden voters, including Republicans and Independents, and Democratic voters specifically, half of the Biden voters, 50%, and 51% of Democratic voters, say that it’s likely Harris will become president before his term ends.
In the event that Joe Biden does not run for re-election, the leading politicians among Democratic primary voters are: Kamala Harris 28%, former First Lady Michelle Obama 16%, and Sec. of Transportation Pete Buttigieg with 8% of support.
New York Rep. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez garnered 7% of the support. Thirteen percent of likely Democratic voters said they were undecided given the potential field of 16 candidates McLaughlin polling inquired about.
Ironically, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo moved up from 2% support in June to 4% now.
When it comes to facts and information about Covid and vaccines, an overwhelming 79% of likely voters trust their own doctor or other local health care professionals rather than government or political leaders.
Two-thirds of the voters say that they are fully vaccinated. Another 15% have received one shot, or plan to get the vaccine, or may get the vaccine.
Another 3% say they have been tested for antibodies from having Covid.
Only 16% say that they are not planning on getting the vaccine and 2% didn’t know.
The results of our August national survey see the actual decline we forecast from our June poll. Sadly, at this time, we think the trend will continue.
John McLaughlin has worked professionally as a strategic consultant and pollster for over 35 years. Jim McLaughlin is a nationally recognized public opinion expert, strategic consultant and political strategist who has helped to elect a U.S. President, Prime Ministers, a Senate Majority Leader, and a Speaker of the House. Read John and Jim McLaughlin's Reports — More Here.
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