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Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

President Joe Biden

Screenshot from official POTUS account on Instagram (@POTUS)

President Joe Biden is off to a blisteringly fast start, making good on many campaign promises in his first days of office. And his efficacy in the Oval Office seems to be doing great things for his opening approval ratings.

"Biden's initial approval higher than Trump's ever was," read a Political Wire headline, referring to a Morning Consult poll. The key figures from the poll:

56 percent of voters approve of Biden's job performance, compared with 46 percent who approved of Donald Trump's performance at a similar point in 2017;
91 percent of Democrats approve of Biden versus 83 percent of Republicans who said the same of Trump at this time four years ago;
52 percent of voters hold favorable views of Vice President Kamala Harris, up two points from pre-inauguration polling, while 40 percent view her unfavorably, down three points over that time frame.

President Biden also showed strong numbers in polls by The Hill with 63 percent approval, and Reuters/Ipsos with 55 percent.



Polls taken regarding specific Biden actions seem to be boosting his initial approval ratings. For example, 69 percent approve of Biden's handling of the coronavirus pandemic, according to Ipsos. Former President Trump struggled to contain Covid-19, with nearly 400,000 Americans dying from the virus on his watc.

The president's reversal of questionable Trump decisions also showed favorable numbers. According to Morning Consult, 54 percent approve of his decision to rejoin the World Health Organization (WHO), 57 percent support Biden rejoining the Paris Climate Accord, and 51 percent support him stopping the construction of Trump's border wall, which was a cornerstone of the former president's 2016 campaign.

Though a lot of Biden policies are seen favorably, others may be much more controversial. Like the president's plan to cancel the Keystone XL Pipeline project, which a Rasmussen Reports poll shows is approved by only 36 percent. It should also be noted that a Rasmussen Reports poll show only 48 percent of likely voters approve of President Biden, while 47 percent disapprove. According to a Rasmussen Reports tweet, that poll was "Sponsored by SLANTED from @SharylAttkisson," a former CBS correspondent who has been affiliated with the Heritage Foundation and now works for the right-leaning Sinclair Broadcast Group.


ABC News suggests that the strong early showing may reflect a new president's political "honeymoon."

"For Biden, starting his tenure as commander-in-chief in a honeymoon period might afford him more room to maneuver on policy," wrote reporter Kendall Karson. "Particularly on his administration's colossal challenge: COVID-19."


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House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, left, and former President Donald Trump.

Photo by Kevin McCarthy (Public domain)

In the professional stratum of politics, few verities are treated with more reverence than the outcome of next year's midterm, when the Republican Party is deemed certain to recapture majorities in the House and Senate. With weary wisdom, any pol or pundit will cite the long string of elections that buttress this prediction.

Political history also tells us that many factors can influence an electoral result, including a national crisis or a change in economic conditions — in other words, things can change and even midterm elections are not entirely foretold. There have been a few exceptions to this rule, too.

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