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CBS News poll: As Biden announces campaign, do Americans feel things at home are under control?

Biden launches 2024 reelection bid
Biden launches 2024 reelection bid 02:35

For years now, Americans have said things in the country aren't going well. 

And there's still a large majority describing things in the country as "out of control" — that hasn't abated in recent months. 

It's not an easy environment for any president launching a reelection bid

So, we asked people why they felt that way — and whether it's directly connected to President Joe Biden or not.

They said there are bigger factors: like the economy (financial insecurity can certainly make people feel less in control) and the general state of U.S. politics, and even U.S. culture and values. Those views cut across party lines. 

Beyond that, though, Republicans and most independents who think things are "out of control" also point to Mr. Biden, in particular. 

Presidents are often tied to larger evaluations of the country, for better or worse, and so, here, Mr. Biden is no exception.

And then each partisan side blames the other. 


The president does get credit among the relative few who do think things are under control, but that's only a quarter of the country. And importantly, to those in his party, he's holding things together.

All this could become an important metric in Mr. Biden's case, since part of his last campaign argued for a more conventional approach to the office, and his announcement video included perceived threats to democracy — which concerns many Americans of late.

Kamala Harris job rating

Mr. Biden also named his '24 running mate, current Vice President Kamala Harris, whose approval rating tracks closely with his. 


Harris' approval among Democrats is comparably much stronger than with the public overall and also tracks with Mr. Biden's.

Mr. Biden began his presidency with an approval rating in the 60s, boosted by optimism about the COVID pandemic getting under control. His approval declined that summer amid the chaotic U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan and sagged a bit further as inflation rose. 

Mr. Biden's job approval rating is 41% today. It has been hovering in the low to mid 40s for the past year and half. 


In his own party's eyes, he's accomplished things in the face of larger challenges, at least what they expected him to do, if not more. This, despite many of them voicing concerns over whether he ought to run again.

This CBS News/YouGov survey was conducted with a nationally representative sample of 2,093 U.S. adult residents interviewed between April 21-24, 2023. The sample was weighted according to gender, age, race, and education based on the U.S. Census American Community Survey and Current Population Survey, as well as the 2020 presidential vote. The margin of error is ±3.2 points.


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