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The Biden Antisemitism Paradox

joe biden israel
Here’s what really shocked me, though: Americans, at least those polled by Echelon, who see antisemitism rising everywhere think Donald Trump would be better at fighting it than Biden. Photo: Miriam Alster/POOL/AFP/Getty Images
Julia Ioffe
May 21, 2024

Yesterday, my colleague Peter Hamby published the results of a poll from Puck and Echelon Insights that really crystalizes what’s plaguing the Biden reelection campaign. In short, Americans have the political memories of goldfish. They increasingly interpret the world in ways that don’t actually intersect with reality. For example, crime is falling, but this poll, like several others, shows Americans are worried about crime rising

Of course, this view of reality is not one that rewards Biden for his own pretty successful and popular policies. In fact, voters’ perceptions of reality clash even with their own past experience. “The Echelon poll, which surveyed 1,023 likely voters from May 13-16, found that 49 percent of voters strongly or somewhat approve of how Trump handled his job as president,” Peter wrote. “That means a lot of voters have changed their minds about his presidency in the last three and a half years. Trump was averaging a 38 percent job approval rating when he left office, and never had an approval rating over 45 percent during his actual term.”