Biden with 50 percent approval

About half of Americans approve of President Biden’s job performance nearly a month into his presidency, though Democrats and Republicans are sharply divided in their perceptions, according to a new Quinnipiac University poll released Wednesday. The survey, which questioned more than 1,000 U.S. adults from Feb. 11 to Feb. 14, found that overall, Biden currently has a positive job approval rating of 50 percent, compared to 38 percent who disapprove.

Biden’s approval rating remains relatively unchanged from Quinnipiac’s first poll of his presidency released earlier this month, which showed that about 49 percent of Americans approved of his job performance, compared to 36 percent who had a negative perception of the new administration.

Wednesday’s poll, which reported a margin of error of 3 percentage points, found that Democrats overwhelmingly support Biden’s performance, 91 percent to 2 percent, while Republicans disapprove 82 percent to 11 percent.

Among survey respondents who were registered voters, Biden’s job approval lies at 52 percent to 38 percent, which Quinnipiac noted is nearly the inverse of former President Trump’s at the same point in 2017, when the Republican had a negative job approval rating of 38 percent to 55 percent.

Quinnipiac University polling analyst Tim Malloy said in a press release on the poll’s findings that Biden’s approval numbers are “solid, but not particularly dazzling.”

Malloy added, however, “there may be some solace in the knowledge that his predecessor spent four years in office without getting very close to 50 percent.”

When it comes to the coronavirus pandemic, 58 percent of those surveyed said they approved of Biden’s efforts to combat the virus, with 48 percent approving of his handling of the American economy, which has suffered for months as businesses have been forced to shut down and layoff workers during the pandemic.

Quinnipiac began conducting the poll the same day Biden announced that the U.S. had secured an additional 200 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine, adding that the country should have enough doses from Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech to inoculate every American by the end of July.

The administration is also engaged in ongoing negotiations with Congress on the president’s proposed $1.9 trillion relief package. Democratic leaders in Congress have indicated they are prepared to pass the bill, called the American Rescue Plan, with or without Republican votes in the coming weeks.

However, Americans are mixed when it comes to the administration’s plans for reopening schools amid the pandemic, with 42 percent approving and 38 percent indicating disapproval with Biden’s response.

Biden clarified Tuesday that his goal is to have the majority of K-8 schools physically reopened five days a week by the end of his first 100 days in office. The remarks came after White House press secretary Jen Psaki said last week that Biden aimed to have more than 50 percent of schools holding at least one day of in-person learning per week by the end of his first 100 days.