ERICKSON: Good news for Joe Biden

President Joe Biden's motorcade moves towards the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Friday, Oct. 1, 2021, as Biden is en route to attend a meeting with the House Democratic caucus to try to resolve an impasse around the bipartisan infrastructure bill. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

More Americans have died from COVID-19 during the Biden administration than during the Trump administration. That is not the good news for President Joe Biden.

Former President Donald Trump initiated Operation Warp Speed. We had Democrats casting aspersions on the efficacy of a would-be and supposedly rushed vaccine. We finally got the vaccine at the end of the Trump administration. The moment Biden became president, Trump voters cast aspersions on the vaccine and the Democrats bullied anyone skeptical of it.

People still died. The delta variant has upended lives and taken loved ones; it has sent progressives cowering in fear of a microbe and upped their loathing of their fellow man. “Love your neighbor,” which has no caveats, carve-outs or exceptions in Scripture, now comes with an “except for the unvaccinated” disclaimer for the Left.

Americans are still stranded in Afghanistan. That too is not the good news for Biden. Officials of San Juan Unified School District in California announced the district has 41 students still trapped in Afghanistan. Josh Youssef of Help The Persecuted, a Christian nonprofit in Atlanta, reported he has 600 Christian refugees trying to flee Kabul. His organization had chartered planes and drafted a letter to the Taliban asserting his organization’s ability to evacuate, but the Biden administration continues to be an impediment.

Fifteen thousand Haitian refugees have made it into the United States at Del Rio, Texas. Most of them have been allowed to stay, pending court dates. Many of them have COVID-19 and are unvaccinated. The government has already lost track of many of them. Now, more than 30,000 more refugees are walking through Mexico headed north. Panama’s foreign minister arrived in the United States to raise awareness of the coming humanitarian crisis. Her warnings fell on deaf ears. That is not the good news for Biden.

The just-released Quinnipiac poll is disastrous for Biden.

All of this comes as Democrats are squabbling over the price tag for a reconciliation package in Congress. The individual items allegedly show public support, but the public collectively is not smart and does not really understand the things Congress offers. The public is worried about costs, inflation, fuel prices and grocery store bills.

Gas prices continue to rise. The Biden administration took over in January and set about hurting oil producers. They refused pipelines, rolled back access to federal lands and made it otherwise more complicated to drill. All of this was by design to drive up fuel costs, thereby forcing Americans to use less or move to alternatives in the name of climate change. As it had the perfectly foreseeable consequences of driving up gas prices and thereby driving up the prices of everything else, the Biden administration begged OPEC to save the president from his policies. OPEC has refused.

None of these things are the good news for Biden. The cumulative effect of these things is to drag down Biden’s polling. The just-released Quinnipiac poll is disastrous for Biden. Quinnipiac historically has a slight bias in favor of the Democrats. Even with that bias, the president’s approval is at 38%. Only 23% of the public supports his handling of the border issue. Thirty-four percent approve of his handling of foreign policy. Thirty-seven percent approve of his handling of taxes. Thirty-nine percent approve of his handling of the economy.

More damning, 55% say that “the Biden administration is not competent in running the government,” while 56% say Biden does not have “good leadership skills.” Tim Malloy, Quinnipiac’s polling analyst, noted, “President Biden is being hammered on all sides as his approval rating continues its downward slide to a number not seen since the tough scrutiny of the Trump administration.”

So, what is the good news for the Biden administration? The good news is that it is October of 2021 and not October of 2022. Things can turn around. Unfortunately, even as the bad headlines have receded, Biden’s polling has not turned around. Likewise, the Virginia gubernatorial race, which should be a Democratic blowout, is coming down to a nail-biter. It all suggests a voter backlash has begun in earnest.

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