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50% Now View Biden Favorably

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Historically speaking, being vice president has generally been a thankless but not too demanding job. Joe Biden, unlike his predecessor Dick Cheney, seems to be following this more traditional model, and voters are viewing him slightly more favorably these days.

The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 50% of Likely U.S. Voters now hold at least a somewhat favorable opinion of Biden, including 17% with a Very Favorable view of him. Forty-four percent (44%) regard the former longtime Delaware senator unfavorably, with 23% Very Unfavorable. (To see survey question wording, click here.) 

This is only the second time that Biden’s favorables have entered the 50s since September 2009. They fell to a low of 41% last May. At the other extreme, Biden’s unfavorables hit a high of 53% in May and August of last year but were as low as 39% in March 2009. Like his boss, President Obama, Biden’s first few months in office were marked by higher favorables, but those numbers began to suffer as opposition arose to their political agenda.

Still, by comparison, only 38% of voters held a favorable opinion of Cheney in November 2008, two months before he stepped down as vice president. Fifty-five percent (55%) held favorable views of Biden in that same survey, although the plurality (47%) did not expect him to play as important role under Obama as Cheney did under Bush.

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The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters nationwide was conducted on January 19-20, 2011 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.


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