63% Say They Cut Back on Food or Groceries This Month

The October Emerson College Polling national survey finds President Joe Biden with a 53% disapproval rating, and 39% approval. This reflects a six percentage point drop in Biden’s approval since last month, and a four percentage point increase in the president’s disapproval.

Fifty-seven percent disapprove of the job that the US Congress is doing, while a quarter (25%) approve. Eighteen percent are neutral or have no opinion.

On the generic congressional ballot, 46% of voters plan to support the Republican candidate and 41% the Democratic candidate. Since last month, congressional Republicans have increased their support by one percentage point, and Democrats have lost four percentage points.

“Among those who say they are ‘almost certain’ they will vote this November, congressional Republicans lead by ten percentage points, 51% to 41%. Among those who say they will only ‘probably’ vote, Democrats lead by eleven percentage points, 45% to 34%,” Kimball noted.

Kimball added, “Regionally, congressional Republicans have a 12-point lead in both the Midwest and South. In the West, congressional Democrats have a 10-point lead; however, Democrats lead by just one percentage point in the Northeast.”

The majority (66%) of US voters think the United States is headed on the wrong track, while 34% think it is headed in the right direction.

When Democrats are asked if they feel the leadership of the Democratic Party is taking the party in the right or wrong direction, 75% of Democrats think their party leadership is taking the party in the right direction, and 25% the wrong direction.

When Republicans are asked if the leadership of the Republican Party is taking the party in the right or wrong direction, 66% of Republicans think party leadership is taking the party in the right direction and 35% the wrong direction.

The economy remains the top issue in determining the Midterm Election vote for 44% of voters, followed by abortion acces (12%), and threats to democracy (11%).

A majority of voters (63%) have cut back on food or groceries this month, while 37% say they have not.

Kimball said, “Of the 63% who have cut back on food or groceries this month, 60% disapprove of the job Biden is doing as president, 52% plan to vote for the Republican congressional candidate in the midterm election.”

Regarding whom or what voters blame for an increase in inflation, 43% blame the Biden administration, 22% blame corporate greed, 12% blame supply chain issues, 12% blame Putin and the war in Ukraine, and 8% blame pandemic stimulus payments. Three percent blame something else.

In a hypothetical 2024 matchup between President Biden and former President Trump, 43% would support Biden and 40% Trump. Eleven percent would support someone else and 6% are undecided.

Forty percent say the various criminal investigations into former President Donald Trump’s businesses and actions makes them more likely to support Trump in 2024 if he were to run, while 31% say it makes no difference, and 29% say it makes them less likely to support Trump.


The Emerson College Polling survey of US voters was conducted October 18-19, 2022. The sample registered voters, n=1,000, with a margin of error (MOE) of +/- 3 percentage points. The data sets were weighted by gender, education, race, party affiliation, and region based on 2022 turnout modeling. It is important to remember that subsets based on demographics carry with them higher margins of error, as the sample size is reduced. Data was collected using an Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system of landlines and an online panel.