Joe Biden as popular as top Republican officeholders in Texas, UT/TT Poll finds

Texas Politics

Vice President Kamala Harris, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of Calif., stand and applaud as President Joe Biden addresses a joint session of Congress, Wednesday, April 28, 2021, in the House Chamber at the U.S. Capitol in Washington. (Melina Mara/The Washington Post via AP, Pool)

AUSTIN (Texas Tribune) — Texas Democrats think Joe Biden is doing a good job as president, according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll.

But Texas Republicans don’t.

Overall, the president gets good grades from 44% of Texas voters and bad grades from 46% — numbers that are better or roughly the same as the state’s most popular Republican leaders. Underneath Biden’s overall numbers, as with other officeholders in Texas, are starker partisan grades: 88% of Democrats said Biden is doing a good job, and 86% of Republicans disapprove of the work he’s doing.

Biden does a little better — but still poorly — with Republicans on how he’s handled the response to the pandemic; 14% approve, and 67% disapprove. But 92% of Democrats approve. And overall, 49% of Texas voters give Biden good grades on the pandemic, while 35% think he’s done a bad job.

Overall, 38% approve of Biden’s handling of the economy and 46% disapprove. Only 23% of voters approve of his response to immigration and border security, while 59% disapprove.

A 55% majority of Texas voters disapprove of the job the U.S. Congress is doing; 24% said they approve, but only 4% strongly approve. It’s a Democratic Congress, getting good grades from 49% of Texas Democrats. Among Republicans, 82% disapprove of the work being done in the U.S. Capitol.

The state’s U.S. senators are getting better grades than Congress as a whole. John Cornyn gets approving notices from 31% of all voters and disapproving ones from 43%. Among his fellow Republicans, 57% approve and 18% disapprove of his work.

Ted Cruz, overall, has the approval of 43% and disapproval from 48%. He’s more popular with Texas Republicans than the senior senator, too, with 80% saying they approve of the job he’s doing — 57% strongly so.

Gov. Greg Abbott gets good marks from about as many Texas voters (43%) as give him bad marks (45%). He’s popular with Republicans, though: 77% approve of the way he’s doing his job. Those numbers are consistent with the way voters grade the governor on his response to the pandemic. Overall, 43% approve and 48% disapprove. Among Democrats, 87% disapprove, and among Republicans, 76% approve.

Just over a third of Texas voters (35%) approve of the way Republican Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick is doing his job, while 39% disapprove. New House Speaker Dade Phelan, a Republican, still hasn’t made an impression on most voters — a condition he has in common with most of his predecessors in that post. While 20% of voters said he’s doing a good job, and 22% said he’s not, 57% of the voters either have no impression of him or no opinion.

Attorney General Ken Paxton, regularly in the news for legal actions involving the state and as the subject of an indictment on securities fraud and a federal investigation into allegedly using his public office to help a campaign donor, is doing a good job, according to 32% of Texas voters, and a bad one, according to 36%. The remaining 30% either had a neutral or no opinion. Among Republicans, 59% said he’s doing a good job, and among Democrats, 68% said he’s doing a bad job.

The University of Texas/Texas Tribune internet survey of 1,200 registered voters was conducted from April 16-22 and has an overall margin of error of +/- 2.83 percentage points. Numbers in charts might not add up to 100% because of rounding.

This article originally appeared in The Texas Tribune at The Texas Tribune is a nonprofit, nonpartisan media organization that informs Texans – and engages with them – about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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