WASHINGTON – US President Joe Biden’s public approval rating edged up this month to its highest level since March, bolstered by support from members of his Democratic Party even as House Republicans launch a formal impeachment inquiry, a Reuters/Ipsos poll showed.
The three-day poll, which ended on Sunday, showed a marginal increase in Mr Biden’s popularity from last month, when 40 per cent of respondents said they approved of his performance since taking office in January 2021.
The poll had a margin of error of three percentage points and showed approval of Mr Biden to be largely a matter of partisanship. Some 80 per cent of self-identified Democrats approved of Mr Biden, up marginally from August.
Ninety-one per cent of Republicans disapproved of Mr Biden.
Mr Biden’s public approval rating has held below 50 per cent since August 2021.
Republican US House of Representatives Speaker Kevin McCarthy on Tuesday called for an impeachment inquiry into Mr Biden, raising the stakes for partisan battle ahead of the 2024 presidential election.
Republicans have accused Mr Biden of profiting while he served as vice-president from 2009 to 2017 from his son Hunter Biden’s foreign business ventures, though they have not presented substantial evidence. The White House has said there is no basis for an investigation.
Of the four US presidents that preceded Mr Biden, two – Bill Clinton and Donald Trump – were impeached by the US House and acquitted by the US Senate.
Following the Republican-backed impeachment probe into Mr Clinton, a Democrat, Republicans lost House seats in the 1998 midterm elections. Following the two Democrat-backed probes into Trump, the Republican president lost his 2020 reelection bid to Mr Biden.
The new Reuters/Ipsos poll showed the economy remained Americans’ top concern, with 23 per cent of respondents selecting it as “the most important problem facing the US today.”
US inflation rates have been historically high during Mr Biden’s term, prompting central bankers to raise interest rates in a bid to tame prices.
Some 13 per cent of respondents selected “crime or corruption” as the top problem.
The Reuters/Ipsos poll gathered responses online from 1,029 adults, using a nationally representative sample. REUTERS
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