Politico has recently engaged in a bit of wishful thinking regarding President Joe Biden, whose performance in the Oval Office has left much to be desired. In an article published on Monday, authors Christopher Cadelago and Eugene Daniels weave a fantastical narrative portraying Biden as politically impervious to attacks by Republicans. However, the facts seem to demonstrate something different.
The authors begin the article by suggesting that Republicans have had a difficult time attacking President Biden. They argued that their criticisms against the chief executive were not landing.
The article explains that “according to an analysis conducted by Democratic-leaning communications agency Bully Pulpit Interactive for Politico,” the GOP is struggling to create effective lines of attack against the Biden presidency.
The authors write:
Over the last three months, Republicans and affiliated groups and committees have spent nearly $2.5 million trying to paint Biden and his priorities in a negative light. That’s more than three times what they’ve spent on Facebook ads targeting other leading Democrats — from Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and former President Barack Obama — and issues like socialism, fake news, and “defund the police” combined.
Politico suggests that these attacks lack efficacy because:
“[T]here has not been a consistent theme to the anti-Biden spots. The attack lines getting pushed most on the right go after Biden’s massive infrastructure push, his call for raising taxes, dark money groups that support his agenda, his position on guns and the rise of gun violence in U.S. cities, according to Bully Pulpit’s analysis.”
The article also argues that:
“[P]olitical veterans say the approach is likely to run into major hurdles. Opposition parties tend to do better when they have one, clear thematic attack line against a sitting president. And it remains difficult to portray Biden as a villain, owing to his lengthy time in public office.”
But it appears the authors are not reading the writing on the wall and are missing some important elements in this equation.
For starters, President Biden’s honeymoon period just ended and his approval ratings are beginning to trend downward. Recent polling suggests that Americans might be starting to view Biden less favorably. A recent Monmouth Poll released in the middle of June showed his approval rating at 48 percent, which was a significant decrease. Liberty Nation’s Graham Noble observed:
For context, it is worth noting that this same tracking poll had Donald Trump at the identical approval rating five months into his own presidency. Of course, Biden was hailed by the media as the man who would save America, whereas Trump was supposed to bring economic ruin, war, chaos, and dictatorship. Considering how much public opinion is driven by media influence, one could be forgiven for assuming that support for Biden should be considerably higher than that enjoyed by his predecessor at the same point.
Moreover, it is also important to remember that Republicans don’t necessarily have to cast Biden as a villainous monster. The right does not have to convince the American public that Biden is the real-life embodiment of Emperor Palpatine. It might be enough to cast him as an incompetent placeholder president who manages to bungle every major issue facing his administration. A recent Harvard/Harris poll shows that the public is not as confident in Biden’s leadership as the activist media would have us believe. (See: Left-Leaning Study Reveals Some Catastrophic News for Democrats)
Contrary to what Democrats might think, Republicans are not capitalizing on Biden’s gaffes as a strategy. Rather, they are focusing on his mishandling of the migrant crisis, his radical agenda, and his apparent inability to get anything substantive accomplished. Biden is clearly more of a Mr. Magoo than a Lex Luthor. This will likely be enough to defeat him in 2024, assuming that he runs for re-election.
To put it simply, Republicans may not have to do much to change public perception of the Biden administration. This president might just foul things up so drastically that he defeats himself.