White House Report Card: Biden Stuck in Neutral

This week’s White House Report Card finds President Joe Biden tripping his way through a week of clashing headlines.

On the positive front, the White House received some good news about jobs and pay. But Biden also hit a new low in polling. In the latest Rasmussen Reports survey, he finally fell below former President Donald Trump’s worst-ever approval rating.

Conservative grader Jed Babbin gave the week an “F,” listing the president’s missteps of the week. Democratic pollster John Zogby graded the week a “C” and highlighted the positive news on jobs.

Jed Babbin
Grade: F

It was another week of cheap melodrama from Biden and his team with a variety of false or ridiculous statements, monumentally foolish actions, and praise from people Biden wishes wouldn’t praise him.

The most inexplicable news of the week was that Team Biden had allowed at least 5 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to be sold overseas. Biden broadcast his draining of the SPR as a way to bring gasoline prices down. How does sending the SPR oil to Italy, China, India, and the Netherlands bring U.S. gas prices down? Well, duh, it doesn’t.

Then there is Vice President Kamala Harris’s latest venture into crafting risible word salads, one on the horrific shooting of paradegoers in Highland Park, Illinois, and another on abortion legislation. Fortunately for Harris, Biden and the rest of his team made so many other laughable statements that hers was lost in the shuffle.

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre continued to spin but not as slickly as her predecessor. Talking about the economy, she said, “I don’t think it’s that our plan is not popular with the American people. We know that the American people are feeling the high cost. We understand what they are feeling, because, because when you look at inflation, when we look at where we are economically, and we are in a strong, we are stronger economically than we have been in history.” YGBSM.

Congressional Democrats, meanwhile, are planning on more spending. They want to use the Senate’s budget reconciliation process to spend another $500 billion on Obamacare subsidies, the government “negotiation” of prices on prescription drugs, and such. More government spending means higher inflation, as if we aren’t suffering enough of it already.

Biden earned praise from China for his remark, “My message to the companies running gas stations and setting prices at the pump is simple: This is a time of war and global peril. Bring down the price you are charging at the pump to reflect the cost you’re paying for the product. And do it now.” That’s a nice message for the mom-and-pop owners of many gas stations. China’s government-controlled press were, within hours of Biden’s remark, publishing comments praising Biden for finally condemning the “exploitation” of capitalism.

DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said that the Biden administration was doing a great job at the southern border, while the United Nations said this week was the “deadliest border crossing” in the world.

Meanwhile, the misnamed Justice Department is suing Arizona for imposing a requirement of proof of citizenship to vote.

Biden promised governance by a return of “the adults,” but his team is behaving like a bunch of drunken high-schoolers driving stolen cars. Is it November yet?

John Zogby
Grade: C

Conflicting numbers tell the story of Biden this week.

There was very good economic news, with the unemployment rate staying at 3.6% and wages rising at a 5.1% rate. The addition of 372,000 new jobs outperformed projections of around 200,000, and the new jobs are being interpreted as an economy that may not be headed into a severe recession.

While the president’s job approval rating stayed under 40%, with one poll showing 35%, his party’s candidates going into November may have received a boost from last week’s Supreme Court abortion and EPA rulings. New polling shows Democratic Senate candidates increasing their leads in Georgia, Arizona, and Nevada — and continuing to hold a big edge in Pennsylvania. In a few instances, the congressional generic vote has actually tightened up.

At the same time, negotiations between Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and West Virginia’s Sen. Joe Manchin continued in earnest to salvage at least some of the president’s “Build Back Better” program (a.k.a. Build Back Something, Anything Before November). Not sure where that will lead, but it is happening and could be pivotal.

Reporting by The Washington Examiner.