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The Zogby Poll®: Biden's job approval as president-elect is strong; 30% of Democrats approve of the job Trump is doing; Nearly a third of Republicans approve of Biden's job as president-elect

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Biden Job Approval Polls

In our inaugural analysis of President-elect Joe Biden's job approval, Biden enters office with a very solid rating. His job approval is better than where Barack Obama was when he began his first term according to polling (Obama-52% positive/29% negative/19% not sure-Zogby Poll 1/22/2009). Time will tell if Biden can maintain such a popular job approval rating, but history tells us most presidents enter office with high approval ratings. As the reality of Washington D.C. dysfunction sets in, not to mention a raging pandemic, and the prospect of a bad economy, potential black clouds loom of over a Biden/Harris administration.

Overall, among surveyed voters, 61% approved (strongly and somewhat approve combined) of Biden's job as president compared to only 35% who disapproved (strongly and somewhat disapprove combined), while four percent were not sure. Biden performed very well with his Democratic base: younger voters, women, minorities, and suburban voters.

There was an obvious difference when it came to the age of surveyed voters. The younger voters aged 18-29 (61% strongly and somewhat approve/33% strongly and somewhat disapprove) approved of Biden much more than older voters aged 65+ (52% strongly and somewhat approve/46% strongly and somewhat disapprove). Voters aged 30-49 gave President-elect Biden the best rating (67% strongly and somewhat approve/28% strongly and somewhat disapprove).

Gender also factored into how voters viewed the incoming president. Men (68% strongly and somewhat approve/28% strongly and somewhat disapprove) were much more enthusiastic about the prospects of a Biden presidency than women (55% strongly and somewhat approve/41% strongly and somewhat disapprove).

Not surprisingly, President-elect Biden performed well with Hispanics (70% strongly and somewhat approve/25% strongly and somewhat disapprove) and African Americans (76% strongly and somewhat approve/17% strongly and somewhat disapprove)

When it came to voters' environs, Biden did great with large city voters (79% strongly and somewhat approve/18% strongly and somewhat disapprove) but did not fare as well with suburban voters (53% strongly and somewhat approve/42% strongly and somewhat disapprove).

Biden's popularity also transcended party identification: he received a positive job approval with nearly a third (31% strongly and somewhat approve/66% strongly and somewhat disapprove) of Republicans. Biden's numbers were impressive with both Independents (58% strongly and somewhat approve/33% strongly and somewhat disapprove) and Democrats (91% strongly and somewhat approve/7% strongly and somewhat disapprove).

President-elect Biden was also perceived well among all generations (especially, Generation X-71% strongly and somewhat approve/26% strongly and somewhat disapprove) regions (especially, the west region-70% strongly and somewhat approve/26% strongly and somewhat disapprove), income levels (especially, the highest earners annually-$150K+-83% strongly and somewhat approve/15% strongly and somewhat disapprove), union voters (84% strongly and somewhat approve/16% strongly and somewhat disapprove) and consumers, such as, weekly Walmart shoppers (66% strongly and somewhat approve/32% strongly and somewhat disapprove) and weekly Amazon shoppers (72% strongly and somewhat approve/26% strongly and somewhat disapprove). What's worth mentioning is that the groups listed above represented majorities that approved of President Trump during his first term.

The only area Biden showed weakness was with rural voters (45% strongly and somewhat approve/52% strongly and somewhat disapprove), including rural women (42% strongly and somewhat approve/57% strongly and somewhat disapprove) and rural men (49% strongly and somewhat approve/43% strongly and somewhat disapprove).

Trump Job approval

This is one of the last few times we will poll President Trump's job approval numbers. As of this poll, the president's job approval remained steady at 51% approval (strongly and somewhat approve combined) and 47% disapproval (strongly and somewhat disapprove combined). As the reality for Trump sets in that he is leaving office, unceremoniously, and will become a pedestrian for at least for the next four years, he leaves office much the same as he came in-the "chaos candidate." Trump remains defiant and insists the election results were rigged by Democrats to favor Joe Biden. This could be his rallying cry to become the Republican nominee in 2024. The only problem for Trump is that he needs to shore up more support among his base, some of which are more favorable of President-elect Biden now.

Trump's numbers with his base: men (53% strongly and somewhat approve/46% strongly and somewhat disapprove), non-college educated voters (50% strongly and somewhat approve/49% strongly and somewhat disapprove), whites (60% strongly and somewhat approve/39% strongly and somewhat disapprove), older voters aged 50-64 (58% strongly and somewhat approve/41% strongly and somewhat disapprove), Generation X (56% strongly and somewhat approve/42% strongly and somewhat disapprove), and rural voters (54% strongly and somewhat approve/45% strongly and somewhat disapprove) remained strong, but Biden performed mostly better with these groups.

The outgoing president also scored well for his job as president with Millennials (53% strongly and somewhat approve/46% strongly and somewhat disapprove), weekly Walmart shoppers (61% strongly and somewhat approve/39% strongly and somewhat disapprove), weekly Amazon shoppers (59% strongly and somewhat approve/41% strongly and somewhat disapprove), households that earn $100-150K annually (56% strongly and somewhat approve/44% strongly and somewhat disapprove), voters aged 30-49 (55% strongly and somewhat approve/43% strongly and somewhat disapprove), large city voters (56% strongly and somewhat approve/43% strongly and somewhat disapprove), urban men (58% strongly and somewhat approve/44% strongly and somewhat disapprove), suburban voters (50% strongly and somewhat approve/49% strongly and somewhat disapprove) and rural women (62% strongly and somewhat approve/39% strongly and somewhat disapprove).

The president did better than expected with suburban women (52% strongly and somewhat approve/47% strongly and somewhat disapprove) and Democrats (30% strongly and somewhat approve/70% strongly and somewhat disapprove).

As Biden enters the oval office with a strong job approval as president-elect, he is no doubt in his honeymoon phase. Work begins for Biden officially on January 20, 2020 and what a mess he will inherit. He must unite the country, deal with tens of millions of adults who are jobless, a raging pandemic, and a national strategy to distribute the coronavirus vaccine. What a to-do-list on day one. The data of his job approval numbers points to in-roads he has made with Trump supporters. Biden is very popular with Generation X, Southern voters, whites, consumers, men, Independents and non-college educated voters-voters who made up Trump's base. Biden has all the advantages to succeed for four years, but banking on incoming popularity does not guarantee success. Ask Barack Obama and George W. Bush. Both entered the oval office and were immediately in the middle of crises. Biden already has the biggest crisis in the U.S. history to contend with. The people believe he can do the job, but only father time knows for sure if Biden can deliver the goods.

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Zogby Analytics Poll Methodology
US Likely Voters
12/8/20 - 12/9/20

Zogby Analytics conducted an online survey of 892 likely voters in the US.

Using internal and trusted interactive partner resources, thousands of adults were randomly invited to participate in this interactive survey. Each invitation is password coded and secure so that one respondent can only access the survey one time.

Using information based on census data, voter registration figures, CIA fact books and exit polls, we use complex weighting techniques to best represent the demographics of the population being surveyed. Weighted variables may include age, race, gender, region, party, education, and religion. The party breakdown for this survey is as follows: 37% Democrat, 35% Republican and 28% Independent/unaffiliated.

Based on a confidence interval of 95%, the margin of error for 892 is +/- 3.3 percentage points. This means that all other things being equal, the identical survey repeated will have results within the margin of error 95 times out of 100.

Subsets of the data have a larger margin of error than the whole data set. As a rule we do not rely on the validity of very small subsets of the data especially sets smaller than 50-75 respondents. At that subset we can make estimations based on the data, but in these cases the data is more qualitative than quantitative.

Additional factors can create error, such as question wording and question order.

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About Zogby Analytics:
Zogby Analytics is respected nationally and internationally for its opinion research capabilities. Since 1984, Zogby has empowered clients with powerful information and knowledge critical for making informed strategic decisions.

The firm conducts multi-phased opinion research engagements for banking and financial services institutions, insurance companies, hospitals and medical centers, retailers and developers, religious institutions, cultural organizations, colleges and universities, IT companies and Federal agencies. Zogby's dedication and commitment to excellence and accuracy are reflected in its state-of-the-art opinion research capabilities and objective analysis and consultation.

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