Biden "Sinking" - Harvard Harris Poll Debrief with Mark Penn & Bob Cusack


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Presidential Pollster Mark Penn is joined by Bob Cusack, Editor in Chief of The Hill, to discuss a new Harvard-Harris Poll, fielded October 26-28, 2021.
Mark Penn (00:07):

All right. Welcome to the discussion of the October 26 - 28 Harvard CAPS Harris Poll, administered by myself, Dritan Nesho and Professor Stephen Ansolabehere, of the Harvard CAPS Center. You can always check for the full results at We'll be improving that website, if not this month, probably by the next. And you can listen to us have a pretty good discussion with Bob Cusack, Editor-in-Chief of The Hill.

Bob Cusack (00:42):

Thanks, Mark. As far as this polling, it's more bad news for The President. I mean, what do you think summarizes all this data that you have? What is the word that comes across or sentence, for The White House, looking at these really dismal numbers?

Mark Penn (01:04):

"SINKING" - The White House continues to sink, right? And they're sinking now. And in, because the economy is seen by the average voter, as deteriorating, is on the wrong track and inflation is coming in and higher gas prices. And ironically, even as people see the, uh, virus is receding, the administration is not getting any credit. What really is happening here is that in the past, when the virus seemed to be receding, there was sort of an economic euphoria, oh, this is great. We're going to get back. Now, the virus is receding, but people say, well, now I'm really worried about what's happening here in the economy, taxing spending inflation deficits. I mean, that leaves aside all the other issues, but I think that's the most troublesome thing right now for this administration.

Bob Cusack (02:03):

And that dynamic, I think is so important because as we've gone through this pandemic since March of 2020, we've done, you've done a lot of polls. We've talked about it a lot when it was really bad, obviously that hurt The President. A lot of people think that if COVID hadn't come along then Trump would be in a second term, or if he handled COVID just a bit better. He would still be President. Is this the first time you're seeing this fading as an issue, but, but the president not, not getting any credit? Because this summer, if I'm not mistaken, he was getting some credit.