And that’s where we begin our statistical journey today.
One big reason Boudin went down to defeat: Asian American voters.
That election result and other data reveal that Asians are still likely to vote Democratic on the whole, but the party has seen a disproportionate decline in support among this group.
Let’s start with the national polling. As I mentioned at the top, it’s hard to get national polling that tracks Asian voters specifically. I would therefore take these trends as preliminary.
That’s far greater than the drop he’s had with the electorate overall. Biden’s net approval rating has averaged about -14 points this year in Pew polling. He won the 2020 election by a little less than 5 points, according to Pew data. That puts his net approval rating about 19 points lower than his margin over Trump in 2020.
A peek at the generic congressional ballot shows that these trends are not happening in a vacuum.
Biden’s net approval rating was +15 points among Asians who said they had voted in the 2020 election. The same group said they had voted for Biden by +38 points. That’s a 23-point dip.
Biden’s overall net approval rating was -7 points among those who said they had voted in the 2020 election. He beat Trump by about 3.5 points among this group. This makes for about a 10-point drop.
This means Biden was down more than twice as much among Asians than among voters overall.
And like with the Pew data, the generic ballot, according to the Cooperative Election Study, reflects what Biden’s approval rating would suggest: a disproportionate Democratic drop with Asian voters.
Democrats led the 2022 generic ballot by 29 points among Asians who said they had voted in the 2020 election. That’s a 9-point drop from Biden’s 2020 margin.
Among all voters who said they had cast ballots in 2020, Democrats led by 3.4 points. Ergo, the margin was the same for the 2022 congressional ballot test as it was for the 2020 ballot test.
There was a clear positive correlation between how many Asians resided in a precinct and how many votes there were to recall Boudin. That was not the case for any other racial or ethnic group.
Those same precincts still gave Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom more than 60% of the vote in this year’s top-two gubernatorial primary. It’s not like they are full-blown Republican or anything like that.
The heavily Asian precincts (or election districts) in Queens, the most Asian borough in New York, tell a different story. Adams won Queens precincts that are at least 75% Asian by 16 points. De Blasio won those same precincts by 34 points, according to data collected by Matthew Thomas.
That is, the Democratic margin dropped by half from 2017 to 2021.
Again, I would view this data as preliminary, though it’s pretty consistent. And while Asian Americans are a small slice of the electorate, the fact that their numbers are growing and Democrats need all the help they can get right now makes this another worrisome data point for them ahead of the 2022 and 2024 elections.
Biden as Jimmy Carter?
Speaking of Democrats being in trouble, it’s not good news for them anytime a Democrat can reasonably be compared to former President Jimmy Carter during his time in office. But it’s tough to not see some of the similarities between the Carter presidency and the Biden one.
Of course, Biden’s and Carter’s trajectories do have their differences. Some of them are good for Biden, and others aren’t nearly as good.
Carter’s plight within his own party was considerably worse than Biden’s current status. Carter was already trailing in polls for the nomination against Ted Kennedy at this point in 1978. Biden is still ahead of the Democratic field, even if he is polling below 50%.
It wasn’t until later in his presidency that Carter’s popularity bottomed out. This allowed for his Democratic Party to limit its losses in the 1978 midterms and maintain its majorities in the House and Senate.
Biden’s unpopularity, along with significantly smaller Democratic majorities in the House and Senate than Carter had in 1978, will likely sink his party in these midterms.
Put another way, Biden is likely to have a far worse midterm election this year than Carter did in 1978.
Biden, though, is only in the second year of his presidency, so he has time to turn things around. The worst of the economic crisis occurred in Carter’s reelection year, while the current difficulties of the economy may be improving by the time Biden’s name is potentially on the ballot again, in 2024.
For your brief encounters: Happy Father’s Day
To all the fathers out there, hopefully your children treat you right. Unfortunately, they don’t think your day is as important as the day for their mother.
A 2012 CBS News survey found that 72% of Americans said Mother’s Day was more important to them when asked to choose between that and Father’s Day. Only 13% picked Father’s Day.
Ten percent opted for the middle ground (thinking both days were equally important).