As President of the United States, Joe Biden, celebrates his 100th day in office on Thursday, he basks in the enthusiastic praise of his fellow Democrats and the approval of the majority of Americans – a honeymoon that most presidents take in their first few months enjoy.
However, with Biden pushing his aggressive agenda and Democrats poised to defend their lean majorities in the House and Senate in the medium term in November 2022, it’s important to note that history shows that the first 100 days of a president – just 6.84 Percent of his tenure – is almost never an indicator of the position of a president on day 1,461 – the last day of his first term of office.
Riding high so far
Biden began his presidency on January 20 after an historic, politically turbulent four years under former President Donald Trump with the added crisis of a global pandemic that devastated Americans health and economy. From the start, Biden pledged to focus on fighting COVID, stimulating the economy and toning down the frenzied political environment that Trump so shamefully encouraged.
Judging by the attitude of the Americans towards Biden, he seems to have succeeded so far.
According to RealClearPolitics, polls on average show that 53.1 percent of Americans approve of his job performance at this point, while 41.8 percent disapprove.
Around two-thirds of Americans are in favor of his dealing with coronavirus and more than half are in favor of his dealing with the economy. This is evident from several polls published in the past few days.
And according to a poll by Pew Research earlier this month, more Americans like the way Biden behaves as president (46 percent) than they dislike (27 percent).
While pushing massive infrastructure spending proposals and a so-called “family plan,” he sees widespread support not only for those proposals, but also for his answer to the question of how to pay the $ 4 trillion price: corporate tax hikes and the rich.
His support is also broad, coming from independents as well as from every corner of his own party, even progressives who have been very skeptical of Biden since he announced his candidacy two years ago.
“The Biden administration and President Biden have definitely exceeded the expectations of the progressives,” said the de facto chairman of the progressive “Squad” in the US House of Representatives, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, last Friday. “I think a lot of us expected much more conservative administration.”
Warning signs ahead
Ocasio-Cortez’s comments are music to the ears of Republicans who are as united in their opposition to Biden as they are in their continued support for Trump.
They see Biden and Democrats go too far in their policies and, in their view, push too far to the left, way outside the mainstream of the American palette.
They seem to be planning on beating that drum from now until halfway through next year, trying to paint Democrats in districts and states where Trump has won or is considered “too liberal” or even “socialist”. It was a strategy they followed with some success in 2020, taking 15 seats in the House of Representatives and holding down Democrats’ expected gains in the Senate, in a year when a majority of Americans disapproved of the Republican at the top of the ticket – Trump – who ultimately lost.
Republicans aren’t the only ones seeing this as a potential problem for Democrats, there are plenty of Democrats who do too.
For example, James Carville, the political strategist who was the architect of Bill Clinton’s presidential victory in 1992, said that the party’s news is inconsistent with “ordinary people” and uses language that appeals to elites, while “people who You want to choose because you speak a different language.
“We won the White House [in 2020] against a world historical fool. And we got within 42,000 votes of the loss. We lost congressional seats, ”Carville told news site Vox. “So let’s not argue about whether or not we are wrong in our messages. We are.”
Republicans also agree that Biden has a major Achilles heel: the tide of migrants flooding the U.S.-Mexico border and the current administration’s efforts to address what many believe is a crisis.
It is the only major problem on American minds – border security and immigration – that Biden’s handling of it is severely deprecated. According to several polls published last week, only about a third of Americans agree.
Republicans also rely on a little history to work in their favor: the party of every first term president since World War II, with one exception, has lost seats in Congress in the midterm elections, and that includes presidents whose approval ratings are high were higher on their 100th day than Biden.
President Barack Obama addressed his party’s medium-term losses during a press conference in the eastern room of the White House on November 3, 2010 [File: Larry Downing/Reuters]Barack Obama, who had an approval rating in the high 60s on Day 100 in 2009, lost 63 seats in the House of Representatives and another 6 in the Senate in 2010. Bill Clinton was in his high 50s on his 100th day in 1993, but Democrats lost 52 house seats and 8 Senate seats in 1994. Republicans George HW Bush and Ronald Reagan saw similar stories during their first terms in 1990 and 1982, respectively.
As Biden hits his 100-day milestone at a high level, he has to remember that he still has more than 93 percent of his first term in office – 1,300 days of successes and failures, smooth sails and bumps – that affect the vision of the His presidency will shape history.