Navigator To Conduct Live Dial Reaction Groups With Swing Voters During State of the Union
New Memo Details Polling From Biden’s First Year in Office Ahead of National Address
Washington, D.C. — Today, Navigator Research announced that it will conduct live dial groups in Denver, CO during the State of the Union to provide real-time reactions to President Biden’s address. The dial groups will be made up of approximately 25-30 swing voters from the Denver-metro area, including a mix of soft partisans and independents. Once concluded, Navigator will compile a report on reactions to the speech, including how sentiments toward the president and issues raised during the address shifted after listening.
“The State of the Union address is more than a tradition; it’s a critical opportunity for President Biden to communicate successes and address the American public directly amid growing economic pessimism, pandemic fatigue, and frustrations over stalled federal legislation,” said Bryan Bennett, Senior Director of Polling and Analytics at the Hub Project and advisor to Navigator Research. “We know from the last year of polling that Americans broadly support many key elements of Biden’s agenda. They will be looking for him to speak to his record on the economy as well as his plan to fulfill core campaign promises, such as canceling student debt.”
Ahead of the address, Navigator released a new memo based on over a year of tracking surveys to set the stage for the dial groups and provide insight into how Americans feel about some of the core issues facing the country and the Biden administration.
The memo covered four key areas related to President Biden over the last year:
- The Economy: Two in three Americans support the President’s economic agenda, but Americans are generally pessimistic about the state of the economy, with nine in ten (92 percent) believing the costs of everyday goods like groceries are going up. As they consider whether or not the economy is improving, job growth and GDP growth are two of the indicators that Americans trust most.
- The Pandemic: By a 26-point margin, Americans trust President Biden and the Democratic Party more than the Republican Party to ensure enough people are vaccinated against the coronavirus pandemic. Now, more than three in five Americans approve of the vaccine rollout in the United States so far—a marked improvement from the mere 39 percent who approved of the rollout when Biden took office.
- Public Perceptions on Biden: Biden’s approval rating (currently 43 percent approve) has declined over the past year, but his State of the Union appearance could be beneficial. Recent Navigator polling found 56 percent of people would like to hear from the president more. This is particularly true when considering constituencies that backed him in the last election yet his approval has eroded somewhat—for example, 84 percent of Black voters indicated they would like to hear more from him.
- Looking to the Future: Biden may also gain support if he were to announce action to cancel some amount of student loan debt. Canceling a portion of student loan debt is broadly supported by the public, including by 63 percent of those who have never had any student loan debt, and it would also increase perceptions among many that he is keeping campaign promises, particularly among those under the age of 35. Focus groups conducted by Navigator in January among Black voters also found student loan forgiveness would go a long way for participants in improving their quality of life.
About Navigator Research
The Navigator Research project is designed to act as a consistent, flexible, responsive tool to inform policy debates. By conducting research and providing reliable guidance to inform allies, elected leaders, and the press, Navigator helps top leaders in Washington and grassroots leaders around the country shape the debate on the issues that matter most. Follow us on Twitter for the latest updates.