Joe Biden's Approval Rating Mixed as President Struggles to Push Through Agenda

President Joe Biden's approval rating continues on a downward trend, as he approaches his ninth month in office with Democrats division holding up two giant bills that could ultimately define his presidency.

Recent polling paints a mixed picture for Biden, with his approval rating falling as low as just 38 percent in a Quinnipiac University poll conducted from October 1 to 4 and reaching a high of 48 percent in an Ipsos poll from October 6 to 7. It has hovered between 42 and 46 percent in several polls conducted since the beginning of the month.

Poll tracker FiveThirtyEight, which tracks Biden's popularity based on analysis of a wide range of polls and its own system of pollster ratings, gave Biden an approval rating of 44.4 percent as of October 8.

Disapproval of Biden now stands at 48.2 percent, according to FiveThirtyEight's analysis.

The president's approval has been on a downward trend since August 30, the day before the final deadline for the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan.

Since that date, debate has shifted to Biden's economic agenda.

Democrats in the House of Representatives and Senate have clashed over a proposed $3.5 trillion bill, known as the Build Back Better Act, that would significantly expand the social safety net.

They aim to pass the bill through the budget reconciliation process, which would not require Republican support but will need the backing of every Senate Democrat.

Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) have said they will not support the Build Back Better Act with the current the price tag; progressives in the House have sought to hold up a $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure package until progress is made on the larger bill.

The $1.2 trillion bill has already been passed by the Senate, but a vote in the House scheduled for September 30 was delayed. There is no sign yet when it will take place.

Biden made a rare visit to Capitol Hill on October 1 to discuss the two bills and encourage Democrats to reach agreement, but the party still appears to be at an impasse.

The president indicated on Tuesday that he would sign the reconciliation bill even if it contains the Hyde Amendment, which bans federal funding for most abortions. The amendment is added to legislation dealing with women's healthcare and the Build Back Better Act contains an expansion of Medicare.

House progressives are strongly opposed to including the Hyde Amendment but Manchin has said the bill is "dead on arrival" in the Senate if the amendment is not included. The issue could further complicate passing the paired bills.

With Biden's agenda currently stalled in Congress and no clear path to resolving Democrats' disagreements, the president might take solace from the fact that he is still more popular than former President Donald Trump was at this stage in his presidency.

According to FiveThirtyEight's analysis, Trump's approval rating of 38.1 percent on October 8, 2017, while his disapproval stood at 56.4 percent.

Biden Hosts a Hybrid Meeting
U.S. President Joe Biden hosts a hybrid meeting with corporate chief executives and members of his cabinet to discuss the looming federal debt limit in the South Court Auditorium in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on October 06, 2021 in Washington, DC. Recent polls paint a mixed picture for the president as Democrats face internal divisions. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images