- The Washington Times - Sunday, April 10, 2022

More than two-thirds of Americans disapprove of President Biden’s handling of inflation as prices skyrocket across much of the country, according to a new poll. 

A new CBS/YouGov poll released Sunday indicates that 69% of Americans say that Mr. Biden has poorly handled inflation. Similarly, 63% give Mr. Biden poor marks for the White House’s management of the economy. 

Republicans say the results indicate that voters are ready to hold Mr. Biden and Democrats accountable for their economic failures. 

Joe Biden and Democrats’ handling of inflation has been nothing short of disastrous,” said Mike Berg, a spokesman for National Republican Congressional Committee. “They caused the crisis with their failed stimulus bill and now their harmful economic policies are making it worse.”

Administration officials dispute that Mr. Biden is to blame for inflation and note that the administration is pushing several policies aimed at lowering costs across the board. 

“There are steps the president is taking from fixing the family glitch to make sure people have lower cost of health care, to even extending the student loan pause to make sure that even as our economy is continuing to recover, we’re reducing costs,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki told “Fox News Sunday.” 

Over the past year, inflation has soared by 7.9% — the fastest rate in more than 40 years. The effects are being seen across the board, but especially when it comes to the prices of everyday goods.

Voters, in particular, are feeling the bite of inflation at the pump. Gasoline prices are up by 38% since February 2021 and show few signs of slowing. 

The CBS/YouGov poll found that 65% of voters believe Mr. Biden could be doing more to lower gasoline prices, which have skyrocketed more than a dollar-per-gallon over the last year. The sentiment was shared among 93% of Republicans, 67% of independents and 39% of Democrats. 

“You’ve got a nearly 8% inflation rate, which is rising faster than people’s incomes,” said Stephen Moore, a former economic adviser to President Donald Trump. “People are actually losing purchasing power because inflation is like a tax on earnings.”

A report by the Federal Reserve last week shows that Americans are increasingly relying on their credit cards to meet everyday expenses.

Republicans and some economists contend that Mr. Biden’s policies are to blame for rising inflation. They note that the White House’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package, signed into law in 2021, flooded the economy with excess money at a time when the nation was facing a supply chain crisis. 

“Even liberal economists like the Obama White House’s Larry Summers warned that Biden’s big spending spree would set off inflation,” said Sen. Mike Braun, Indiana Republican. 

Democrats disagree that Mr. Biden’s massive coronavirus relief bill is the culprit. They say the supply chain crisis started long before Mr. Biden entered the White House and other factors, like corporate greed, are at play. 

“There is more to these price spikes — some businesses are simply price gouging consumers,” said House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone of New Jersey. “These outrageous actions have been constant throughout the pandemic, evolving with each phase and disproportionately harming the most vulnerable when they can least afford it.”

• Haris Alic can be reached at halic@washingtontimes.com.

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