In the opening days of the war in Ukraine, the fractious American public is remarkably united in opposition to Russia’s invasion, with 74 percent saying the breach is not justified and 76 percent expressing an unfavorable opinion of Russian President Vladimir Putin, according to a new Yahoo News/YouGov poll....And yet:
Three weeks ago, Americans were more likely to say the U.S. should remain neutral (49 percent) than side with Ukraine (46 percent); today, they’re more than twice as likely to want the U.S. to side with Ukraine (57 percent) as to stay out of it (25 percent). Republican opinion has shifted the most, from 8 points in favor of neutrality earlier this month to 34 points in favor of siding with Ukraine....
Americans also tend to agree on how the administration should be responding, with 56 percent saying they favor last week’s “major sanctions” designed to “cut off Russia’s government from Western banks and financial markets” — despite an explicit description that the sanctions were “imposed” by Biden. Unsurprisingly, 72 percent of Democrats favor Biden’s sanctions; just 6 percent oppose them. But the same sanctions also win the support of most Republicans (53 percent), with very little outright opposition (11 percent)....
A clear majority of Americans (56 percent) agree, too, with Biden’s vow “not to send U.S. troops into Ukraine”; only 15 percent disagree.
... just 3 percent of 2020 Donald Trump voters are willing to say President Biden is “doing a better job leading his country” than Putin. Nearly half (47 percent) of Trump voters say Putin is doing a better job than Biden, even as Russia’s economy threatens to collapse under the weight of crippling global sanctions. A slightly smaller share of Trump voters (45 percent) say “neither” man is doing a better job than the other.It's as if Republicans heard the question that said, "In response to Putin’s actions this week, President Joe Biden imposed major sanctions that cut off Russia’s government from Western banks and ﬁnancial markets," and said, "Yes, excellent idea," but still they don't really believe Biden has done this, because if they believed it, they'd have to acknowledge that he's done something right, and that can't be possible, can it? And it's as if they support Ukraine even though they're 100% certain -- or at least they were a week ago -- that Ukraine is only relevant to them because it's one of those countries that gave that filthy Hunter Biden and his dementia-riddled (but evil genius) dad massive amounts of cash.
More Trump voters also express an unfavorable opinion of Biden (95 percent) than of Putin (78 percent) — with a full 87 percent saying they have a “very” unfavorable opinion of the U.S. president versus just 60 percent who say the same about his Russian counterpart.
... just a third of Americans (34 percent) say they approve of how Biden is handling “the situation with Russia and Ukraine.” Nearly half (48 percent) disapprove, and 17 percent are not sure.
... just 28 percent of Americans say Biden’s response to the situation with Russia and Ukraine has been “about right” — while more say his response has been “not tough enough” (39 percent).
... Nearly 9 in 10 Trump voters (89 percent) say they disapprove of how Biden is handling the Russia-Ukraine situation. More than two-thirds (67 percent) say his response has not been tough enough.
So even when Biden does what Americans want, he can't possibly be a good president. To Republicans (and most independents, and a not inconsiderable number of Democrats), "Biden is a bad president" is simply a fact now, like "the sun sets in the west" or "there are twenty-four hours in a day." It can't be called into quesion by any new information.
If Putin blinks as a result of what's being done now, Biden won't get any of the credit. The mainstream media rejected him after the Afghanistan withdrawal, and that made "Biden is a bad president" the across-the-board narrative of the entire media, and thus of the American people.
I don't know what can turn this around. Maybe Biden needs to do something swashbucklingly reckless, like entangling the U.S. military in this war, which poll respondents claim not to want but probably crave in their reptile brains. This will only work if it's a Hollywood war -- a few big booms, maybe a week or so of exciting combat with low casualties, and then Putin's defeat. That can't really happen, of course, but it's probably the only thing that would give Biden a poll bump. Poor bastard.