Last week President Joe Biden delivered his first speech to a joint session of Congress, and he tried to convey that he believes America is better off on his watch.
“Now, after just 100 days, I can report to the nation: America is on the move again, turning peril into possibility, crisis to opportunity, setbacks into strength,” said Biden. “After 100 days of rescue and renewal, America is ready for takeoff, in my view. We’re working again, dreaming again, discovering again, and leading the world again.”
ABC News on Sunday floated a new poll, which it had commissioned, that seemed to reflect Biden’s own optimism.
“Country optimistic after Biden’s 1st 100 days,” said the headline, followed by a subheadline adding, “Nearly two-thirds of Americans say the country is headed in the right direction.”
And indeed, as ABC News reported, “Nearly two-thirds of Americans (64%) are optimistic about the direction of the country in the poll. … The last time the country came close to that level of optimism about the coming year was in December 2006, when 61% said they were optimistic about where the country was headed.”
But, per usual, the details offer an alternative view of how the country sees its Democratic president.
For one thing, the breakdown of the poll’s respondents suggests Biden was bound to do well.
Only 25 percent of those polled were Republicans, according to ABC News. Thirty-one percent were Democrats, and the rest were labeled independent.
Yet ABC News gave us a classic case of burying the lead.
Biden ran as a moderate whose experience, familiarity, and willingness to seek compromise could “heal” the divisions allegedly wrought by the last president. He promised to be the president for all Americans and to bring us together.
The poll showed Biden has accomplished nothing in this regard.
Just 23 percent of those surveyed credited Biden for making the country more unified since he took office.
Twenty-eight percent said America has become more divided, while 48 percent said he’s done nothing to move America in either direction.
What’s telling is who gets blamed for this situation.
Among those who believe Biden has made things worse, 60 percent blame him, while only 6 percent fault GOP leaders in Congress.
In other words, in contrast to ABC News’s headline about all this sunny optimism for the future, more Americans believe our divisions have gotten worse since Biden took office. Among those who agree with this, they blame Biden by a 10-1 margin relative to the Republican opposition in Congress.
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