Is It All Downhill From Here for Joe Biden?

The president’s mis-management of the economy, foreign affairs, and his visible decline in health make next year’s election extremely difficult for the White House.

By Christian Whiton

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Texas Insider Report) — Hamas’ savage and blood-thirsty assault on Israel is only the latest nightmare for President Joe Biden. The breakout by the Islamist proxy of Iran marks a new low point of his presidency, yet Democrats and the media have been shocked by recent polls showing that both Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and former President Donald Trump now beat Biden in notional matchups.

Some Democrats have yet to panic, but they should – Biden’s position will deteriorate further this winter. 

First, there's “Bidenomics.”
A White House insulated from the public by a sympathetic media sent the president out to tout his economic record this summer and fall – what a big mistake. Since Biden took office, cumulative inflation of nearly 20% means that the government has effectively vaporized one-fifth of voters’ savings and purchasing power.

Unlike a stock market decline, this is lost money and buying power that cannot be recovered in the future. 

Unfortunately for Biden, matters are getting worse, not better

Fewer than 4 in 10 voters currently approve of Joe Biden's handling of the economy, and the real economy is getting worse. Voters know it, judging from Biden’s meager 37% approval rating for handling the economy according to the RealClearPolitics average
  • Gasoline Prices will likely increase until a recession arrives.
  • Housing is unaffordable.
  • High Interest Rates will put many companies (as well as families and voters) under stress or into bankruptcy.
  • Consumers have blown through savings from the pandemic, and
  • Student Loan Payments have just resumed.
  • The Manufacturing Sector has been in a slump for a year.
  • Commercial Real Estate is headed for a more profound crisis, which in turn will put financial organizations that carry those real estate companies’ loans into distress.
The economy will likely contract this quarter, leading to a stock market decline. A second quarter of economic contraction in the new year would lead to a technical recession being declared – just as the election campaign heats up next summer. 

The Foreign Policy Outlook is just as Poor

Voters will only become more displeased that Mr. Biden and Washington Democrats appear to care more about Ukraine’s borders than our own.

Biden’s popularity went negative after the humiliating 2021 withdrawal from Afghanistan. His aides and some leading Democrats have hoped that success in Ukraine would wipe away that shame – however the much-touted spring and summer Ukrainian counteroffensive failed. Both parties in Congress support continued funding of Ukraine’s military and government, but the public has soured. Polls now show a majority of voters want an end to the U.S. largesse.

Voters see China and Iran as serious threats that require attention – and aren’t buying the Beltway expert argument that the United States needs to wage a draining proxy war with Russia to scare Beijing and Tehran. 

Biden’s summer charm offensive on China – he sent several cabinet officials to Beijing, one of whom literally bowed to China’s vice premier – has yielded nothing of value. His Europe-first foreign policy also seems to have breathed new life into terrorism sponsored by Iranian and its proxies, including Hamas.

Back at home, Biden now faces Multiple 3rd-Party Challengers who will sap votes from the Democrats in Key States

Robert Kennedy Jr. just decided he will run as an independent, given his treatment by the Democrat establishment and progressive media which have refused to even countenance discussion of his points of view. Liberal activist Cornel West will run as an independent as well.

Democrats comfort themselves that Republicans are in disarray, having ousted the latest Republican Speaker of the House. But all Republicans need is a Speaker who can do a decent job of communicating the crises at the border, on crime – and most importantly on inflation. Given the balance of power in Washington, all Republicans have to do is put up a fight and stay generally on message until all attention turns to the presidential race. That could happen beginning in January when Trump could stumble in the Iowa Caucuses, likely at the hands of Gov. DeSantis.

Finally, there is Biden’s visibly Deteriorating Health

The Constitution created a strong presidency because it is necessary to manage a giant executive branch, act decisively in a crisis – and cut deals in the shared powerlessness that marks much of bureaucratic and legislative Washington. 

Does anyone think Biden is getting better at performing this role?

Three-quarters of voters now say they’re concerned about Biden’s age and mental fitness, yet what also stands out in the polls are the warning signs for Biden beyond his age – including an all-time high disapproval of his job performance, 

Instead of Biden, the highly ideological White House staff operates the executive branch. Voters grasp this dangerous situation, with large majorities saying Biden is too old to govern. 

Therefore, Biden will likely lose altitude on the real economy, the stock market, foreign affairs, and his health. His opponents on the Left and Right will gain strength.

Growing numbers of Democrats perceive this, as indicated by more and more Left-leaning pundits calling for him to step aside. Come winter, they will have even stronger arguments to dump Biden.  

Christian Whiton is a Senior Fellow for Strategy & Trade at the Center for the National Interest. The author of “Smart Power: Between Diplomacy and War” (Potomac Books), he appears frequently on Fox Business and Fox News, and has also appeared on BBC, CNBC, CNN, MSNBC, and other networks.