NPR Poll Has Biden At Lowest Approval Rating Yet After Independents Start Bailing

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Anders Hagstrom White House Correspondent
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President Joe Biden’s approval rating hit an all-time low in a Thursday poll from NPR and PBS Newshour, indicating that Americans care more about Biden’s botched Afghanistan withdrawal than the White House had hoped.

Biden’s approval rating sits at 43% according to the poll, with most of the drop coming thanks to independent voters souring on the 46th president. Biden’s approval fell ten points from July to August among independents, from 46% to 36%; it fell 5 points among Democrats, from 90% to 85%, and 1 point among Republicans, from 6% to 5%. The president fell a total of 6 points from July to August, according to the poll.

The poll also confirmed that a vast majority of Americans — Republican and Democrat — supported withdrawing troops from Afghanistan. Nevertheless, a large majority of Americans viewed Biden’s execution of the withdrawal as a failure. (RELATED: Poll: Biden Approval Rating Slips Among Democrats)

The country remains deeply divided on whether domestic or international terrorism represents the most severe threat to the U.S. The vast majority of Republicans argue it is international terrorism, while Democrats overwhelmingly say the opposite. Among independents, 41% argue international terrorism is the prime threat, while 49% argue it is domestic.

HAMID KARZAI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, AFGHANISTAN – AUGUST 22: This handout image shows A Marine with the 24th Marine Expeditionary unit (MEU) passes out water to evacuees during an evacuation at Hamid Karzai International Airport, Kabul, Afghanistan, Aug. 22. U.S. service members are assisting the Department of State with a Non-combatant Evacuation Operation (NEO) in Afghanistan. (Photo by Sgt. Isaiah Campbell / U.S. Marine Corps via Getty Images)

Numerous polls have shown Biden’s approval rating dropping consistently since June and into August. The slip began with Americans souring on the president’s handling of the immigration crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border, with Vice President Kamala Harris taking a trip to South and Central America that both Democrats and Republicans criticized.

Nevertheless, many of Biden’s policies — the American Rescue, Jobs, and Families plans — remained largely popular, though there was some debate over whether the jobs plan used a too expansive definition of infrastructure.

The Biden White House has sought to deflect blame for the Afghanistan debacle to former President Donald Trump’s administration as well as the former Afghan government. Biden argues that Trump failed to enforce the conditions of his peace agreement with the Taliban. The White House also argues that the Afghan military simply failed to fight for its own survival.

The U.S. withdrew the last of its troops from Afghanistan on Monday, leaving behind more than 100 U.S. citizens and tens of thousands of Afghan allies and refugees.