White House press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre dodged when pressed by a reporter Monday on President Biden's sour approval rating among registered voters, as well as concerns over his age and mental fitness.
The reporter noted during the White House press briefing that recent polling from NBC News showing just 37% of registered voters approved of Biden's handling of the economy and a 56% disapproval, which the reporter noted was the "highest of his presidency." He added that the "major or moderate" concern over Biden's age and mental fitness came from 74% of registered voters.
"Here's what we're going to focus on: We're going to focus on exactly what you just asked me. Right? The first question, which is how do we continue to support the workers. Right? … We're going to do is continue to show how much this president is working for American families," Jean-Pierre responded, referencing a previous question on the ongoing United Auto Workers strike.
She then pivoted to the looming threat of a government shutdown amid ongoing talks between congressional Democrats and Republicans, before praising "Bidenomics" as working "so well" for the American people.
"Americans right now, they've been through a lot, right? They've been through the pandemic, this global pandemic that we're coming out of. They have been through what we've seen because of Russia's war in Ukraine. And we saw inflation spike. We saw what's going on with what Americans are feeling every day," Jean-Pierre said.
"This is why this president has been so zeroed in, so laser focused on lowering costs for Americans. And we've done that. And a lot of the policies that the president has put forward are indeed popular. I mean, Bidenomics has worked so well that you have Republicans in their own districts, in their own states, taking credit for things that the president pushed forward, policies that the president has pushed forward, legislation that they didn't even vote for, if you think about the American Rescue plan, the Inflation Reduction Act," she said.
"So I get the polling that you're laying out. I get that. But we can't be focused on that. We also have to be focused on really speaking directly to the American people. The next three days, you're going to see the president go to three states to do just that," she added.
However, the reporter pressed her. "But 37% approve?"
"I hear you. I hear you. But it is — Look, our focus is going to be on what we can do to continue to deliver for the American people. Polls are polls, right? They are going to be all over the place. They are going to — they're going to — you know, they don't tell the whole story, actually. And that is just the way a poll is," Jean-Pierre said.
She added that Biden would continue doing the job he "promised that he would do," and work to "make Americans' lives a little bit better."