As Joe Biden's Approval Rating Sinks, the Democratic Party Suffers Too

As public opinion of President Joe Biden declined noticeably in recent weeks, after an initial honeymoon period during his first few months in the White House, the Democratic Party's image has suffered too.

Biden enjoyed several months with an approval rating above 50 percent, though it has sunk underwater of late, pushed down in particular by the messy U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan and waning support for his handling of the pandemic.

According to recent polling, the Democratic Party has similarly seen a decline in favorability.

Gallup polling put the Democratic Party's favorability rating at 43 percent, down from 48 percent in January. The party's unfavorability rating, from polling conducted September 1 to 17, has increased to 55 percent from 48 percent in January.

At the same time, Biden's latest approval ratings from Gallup have dropped to the lowest of his term thus far. "Biden's loss of popularity, primarily among independents, is likely a factor in the lower favorable ratings of his party," said Gallup's analysis of its results.

Among independents, the Democratic Party's approval rating has gone from 48 percent in January to 35 percent in the newest polling.

"After a slightly higher than average image score for the Democratic Party earlier this year, Democratic favorability has slipped back to more normal levels," said Gallup's analysis.

"Biden's recent struggles have likely not helped the Democratic Party's image, although it remains close to what it was before he was elected, as does the GOP's image."

joe biden in state dining room october
U.S. President Joe Biden delivers remarks about the need for Congress to raise the debt limit in the State Dining Room at the White House on October 04, 2021 in Washington, D.C. His approval rating has declined, while the favorability of the Democratic Party has also dipped. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

The ratings could provide "clues as to how upcoming elections might go," the analysis said, as the 2022 midterm elections approach: "At this point, about a year before those elections, both parties have work to do to improve their images and convince voters to support their candidates for office."

Democrats face an uphill struggle to maintain their control of Congress. The party's caucus has a narrow majority in the 50-50 Senate, with Vice President Kamala Harris' tiebreaker vote giving them the edge.

In the House, there is a larger Democratic majority, though it is still small and fragile; there are 220 Democrats and 212 Republicans.

The September polling was conducted among 1,005 U.S. adults and has a sampling error of plus or minus 4 percentage points at the 95 percent confidence level. The interviews were conducted via telephone.

Gallup's latest polling, conducted September 1 to 17, put Biden's approval rating at 43 percent. This was down from 49 percent in August, and 57 percent in January when he first took office.

FiveThirtyEight's tracker, which takes a weighted average of the polls, has also monitored Biden's approval decline since he entered the White House. Its first rating, on January 23, was 53 percent approving. Its latest showed 44.8 percent approval, as of October 5.

Separate polling has also shown Biden's approval dip among Democrats.

Newsweek has contacted the Democratic National Committee and the White House for comment.

The graphic below, from Statista, compares Biden's approval rating to his recent predecessors at similar points in their White House tenures.

biden trump obama approval comparison
Statista