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Biden loses popularity after the discovery of confidential documents

By Nehomar Hernández

A Reuters-Ipsos poll conducted between January 13 and 15 suggests a drop in the popularity of US President Joe Biden.

This was reported by The Hill, which indicates that the president currently has 40% support from the Americans, with a tendency to approach the 36% he achieved in May and June 2022 (his all-time low), when the increase in inflation began to mark the agenda of public opinion in North America.

The study, based on 1,035 interviews and which contemplates a margin of error of 3%, gives an account of the criticism that has aroused in American society related to the handling of the scandal of the discovery of several batches of documents in Biden’s office and residential property, containing sensitive information dating from his time as vice president of the administration led by Barack Obama (2008-2016).

Reuters-Ipsos poll, Biden loses popularity after the discovery of confidential documents
The US President, Joe Biden (Photo internet reproduction)

All this represents a major blow to the Democrats, who seemed to have caught a second wind after having managed to prevent the “red wave” from materializing in the midterm elections last November, where the Republicans managed to win a majority in the House of Representatives but fell short in their attempt to do the same in the Senate.

After the midterms, Biden tried to project an image of a strong leader who, despite criticism, had emerged virtually unscathed from the Republican onslaught and, according to Reuters-Ipsos’ own polls, has reported a rise in his popularity, which reached 44.1% in December (his best record for him since October 2021).

However, with the discovery of classified information, everything has changed.

The process in which various documents have been found successively, and which has even led Attorney General Merrick Garland to appoint a special investigator to study the matter, has served to bring to the table discussion the way in which the US authorities, the media and the political establishment have handled this controversy and how they did the same after the assault on the Florida residence of former President Donald Trump in August of last year.

Thus, this has become an issue on which Republicans in both the Lower House and the Senate have been able to build a narrative that draws attention to the treatment privileges that Biden would be receiving in this regard.

Prerogatives that Trump, at the time, did not have.

For example, the leader of the Republican minority in the Senate, the veteran Mitch McConnell, has said that the law should be applied equally in both cases.

“I think the important thing with regard to documents is that these two guys should be treated in exactly the same way. In exactly the same way. And I think the attorney general probably did the right thing by having two special counsel,” said McConnell, who has never been a staunch supporter of the former president.

The truth is that in the midst of all this controversy, other polls show that Trump, who had been pointed out as one of the main people responsible for the Republican debacle in the legislative elections, has returned to lead the presidential race of the GOP ahead of 2024.

The recently published Morning Consult poll shows that the former president leads inside the party by up to 17 percentage points over his eventual internal contender, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.

On the sidewalk in front, Biden insists -for now- on having no plans to decline his intention to be re-elected in 2024. Immediately, the Democrat must deliver the traditional State of the Union speech in Parliament on February 7. There may be more clues about his real political future.

*Venezuelan journalist (Central University of Venezuela) and Master in Political Science (Simón Bolívar University). He is currently doing his doctoral thesis in Political Science and hosts the radio show “Y Así Nos Va” on Radio Caracas Radio.

With information from LGI

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