President Biden’s approval numbers have crept upward in recent months ahead of the November midterms, with his latest rating at 44% in an NPR/Maris poll released Thursday.
Democrats and independents are to thank for his modest surge since his approval rating bottomed out at 36% in July, a sign that his party is beginning to rally around him and that he’s won over some skeptical swing voters.
However, what’s troubling for the Democratic Party writ large is that roughly 7 in 10 said they feel the country is headed in the wrong direction and inflation is top of mind as voters’ most important issue. Inflation came in first (37%), trailed by preserving democracy (27%), abortion (13%), immigration (10%) and health care (10%).
Republicans also have a slight edge when it comes to voter enthusiasm. Those with the highest levels of interest in the election are White, men, older in age or college-educated, groups that typically bode well for the GOP. Those who are Black or younger in age indicated the least amount of interest, key demographics that can make or break elections for Democrats.
Republicans and Democrats faced a statistical tie on who voters prefer to control Congress. Democrats’ narrow edge of 46%-44% was within the poll’s margin of error of plus or minus 4.2 percentage points.
The survey was among 1,690 adults, 1,562 of which were registered voters. The poll was conducted Sept. 27-29.
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