Biden’s Approval Rebounds

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Biden’s Approval Rebounds

ActiVote’s April 1st, 2024 monthly presidential approval poll finds that President Biden’s overall approval rebounded to 39.0%, a significant improvement by 3.4% from his February 35.6% approval rating. This comes after four consecutive months of an approval rating of 36% or less. His disapproval rating came down by 1.9%: from 56.5% in February to 54.6% in March.

ActiVote users have weighed in on Biden’s approval rating since April 2021, with on average 895 participants per month and 941 participants in March 2023, rating Biden on a 5-star rating, which is then converted into standard “approval” and “disapproval” percentages.

The following table highlights the key demographics with the largest increase (and decrease) in approval rating:

The overall picture that emerges is that it is not so much a sudden liking for Biden from voters who previously did not like him, such as rural voters, republicans, White voters, low income, and highschool/some college voters. These voters, who are not part of Biden’s key constituency, barely increased their approval rating for Biden. Instead, it appears that his base, which had cooled on Biden in previous polls, is showing increased approval in this latest poll: democrats and independents, Black and Latino voters, middle and high income voters, and voters with a 4+ year college degree.

The reduction in approval from the oldest voters is most likely a regression to the mean, as their approval rating is still above average.

If we look at the left-to-right spectrum, we see a consistent picture with previous months: Biden’s disapproval on the right is near universal, while Biden also gets some criticism from the progressive left. His core base of support is with the moderate left.

A comparison with February, does show where his increased approval rating comes from:

While Biden’s approval has increased in 8 of the 10 buckets in our left-to-right spectrum, the picture becomes clearer when distinguishing between the left-most three buckets, the middle four buckets, and the right-most three buckets: Biden’s approval has gone up the most in the center: among moderate Democrats and moderate Republicans.

It is hard to ascribe Biden’s improved approval rating to any one specific event. There was some good news in March. His SOTU speech was universally praised as “exceeding the low expectations”. The stock market peaked at close to 40,000. There is also continuing bad news: interest rates remained high. Wars continue in Ukraine and Gaza. Illegal immigration remains an issue. 

With it being hard to ascribe the uptick to anything in particular, it is difficult to predict whether it will endure in April. We will find out in our next poll, which will cover April and is expected on May 1st.

We encourage you to participate in next month’s Approval Poll!

You can explore more details about ActiVote’s polling methodology and our latest polls.