Global Affairs

A year on, why Biden is doing badly in the polls

Covid-19 is only a partial answer. There is also the fundamental question of voter expectations.

Just 40 per cent of US voters now have a positive view of President Joe Biden. PHOTO: AFP
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Passing judgment on the political record of a United States president after he has completed just his first year in office is inherently unfair; quite apart from the fact that all beginnings are difficult, the president still has three full years to learn from past errors, adjust and consolidate his reputation.

However, the US political system relies on such snap judgments. A president's performance during his first year has a direct bearing on the mid-term congressional elections that follow 10 months later. So, the one-year benchmark is not just some arbitrary reference point invented by journalists; in the US, it carries direct and very explicit political consequences.

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