Republican congressional candidates currently hold their largest lead in midterm election vote preferences in ABC News/Washington Post polls dating back 40 years, underscoring profound challenges for Democrats hoping to retain their slim majorities in Congress next year.
While a year is a lifetime in politics, the Democratic Party’s difficulties are deep; they include soaring economic discontent, a president who’s fallen 12 percentage points underwater in job approval and a broad sense that the party is out of touch with the concerns of most Americans — 62% say so.
About as many people see the Republican Party as out of touch (58%), and there’s some solace for Democrats in other results. Notably, President Joe Biden’s keystone policy initiatives are far more popular than he is, with 63% support for the $1 trillion infrastructure bill passed by Congress and 58% support for the now nearly $2 trillion social spending bill still under debate.
Yet, with the infrastructure bill secured, Biden gets little credit in this poll, which was produced for ABC News by Langer Research Associates. Just 31% say he’s keeping most of his major campaign promises, and 35% think he’s accomplished much overall. And while most support his spending and policy plans, crosswinds are evident, as 59% worry he’ll do too much to increase the size and role of government, up 6 points since spring.
As things stand, if the midterm elections were today, 51% of registered voters say they’d support the Republican candidate in their congressional district, 41% say the Democrat. That’s the biggest lead for Republicans in the 110 ABC/Post polls that have asked this question since November 1981. Indeed, it’s only the second time the GOP has held a statistically significant advantage (the other was +7 points in January 2002) and the ninth time it’s held any numerical edge at all.
Among the key factors is the economy. With inflation soaring, 70% say the economy is in bad shape, up from 58% last spring. While just half blame Biden directly for inflation — its worst in 31 years — his approval for handling the economy overall is down to 39%, off 6 points just since early September and 13 points from last spring.
Now, 55% disapprove of Biden’s economic performance — 6 points more than former President Donald Trump’s highest disapproval rating on the economy in September 2017. Just over a year later, Trump’s Republicans lost 40 House seats in the 2018 midterms.
In terms of Biden’s job performance overall, a new low of 41% approve, while 53% disapprove, highly similar to his rating on the economy. Biden’s lost 11 points in approval since spring, accelerating with the coronavirus Delta surge and continuing with inflation.
Specifically on the pandemic, Biden’s rating is less bad, a 47-49% split, approve-disapprove. But that is numerically (albeit not significantly) underwater for the first time, with approval ebbing from 64% in April and 62% in June, both pre-Delta surge.
Biden’s overall approval rating sets or matches career lows among nearly all demographic groups, with positive assessments among most down significantly from their peaks in the spring or summer. The exception is those who already were highly critical of the president, such as Republicans, conservatives and rural residents.
It’s notable that Biden gets just 35% approval from independents — while 63% of independents support the infrastructure bill and 58% support the $2 trillion climate change and social policy package.
Looking to the midterms, 58% of all adults (and 59% of registered voters) are inclined to look around for someone new to vote for. That’s fairly typical, albeit slightly above its average in polls back to 1989. (And House incumbents overwhelmingly tend to get re-elected – 92% on average in midterm elections since 1946.) Nonetheless, marking Democratic challenges, registered voters interested in looking for someone new currently favor Republican over Democratic candidates by 20 points.
Father of Ahmaud Arbery: “ALL lives matter”
Salvation Army: White donors need to offer ‘Sincere Apology’ for their Racism
The Salvation Army wants its white donors to give it more than just money this Christmas season.
Its leadership is also demanding they apologize for being racist.
It’s part of a push by the Christian charitable organization to embrace the ideas of Black Lives Matter, and “dismantle white privilege” and “disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure.”
The Salvation Army’s Alexandria-based leadership has created an “International Social Justice Commission” which has developed and released a “resource” to educate its white donors, volunteers and employees called Let’s Talk about Racism.
It asserts Christianity is institutionally racist, calling for white Christians to repent and offer “a sincere apology” to blacks for being “antagonistic.. to black people and the values of the black community.”
“Many have come to believe that we live in a post-racial society, but racism is very real for our brothers and sisters who are refused jobs and housing, denied basic rights and brutalized and oppressed simply because of the color of their skin,” one lesson explains. “There is an urgent need for Christians to evaluate racist attitudes and practices in light of our faith, and to live faithfully in today’s world.”
In an accompanying Study Guide on Racism, Salvation Army authors explain that all whites are racist, even if they don’t realize it. “The subtle nature of racism is such that people who are not consciously racist easily function with the privileges, empowerment and benefits of the dominant ethnicity, thus unintentionally perpetuating injustice,” it says.
Biden to seek reelection in 2024
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