Jan 4, 2024 - Politics & Policy

No top U.S. government official has an approval rating over 50%

Data: Gallup; Chart: Axios Visuals
Data: Gallup; Chart: Axios Visuals

None of the federal government's leading elected and appointed figures have earned a job approval rating above 50%, a new Gallup poll reveals.

Why it matters: Across party lines, nearly all of the 10 leaders' approval ratings the Gallup poll measured have declined since 2021, reflecting how lower ratings span beyond just President Biden himself.

By the numbers: Chief Justice John Roberts received the highest approval rating at 48%, according to the poll, which was conducted from Dec. 1-20.

  • But Roberts' approval rating has declined by 12 points since 2021, when that figure stood at 60%. The earlier poll had been conducted before the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.
  • With a 43% approval rating, Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell also saw a double-digit decline in his rating since 2021, which had stood at 53%.

Meanwhile, Biden scored a 39% approval rating, down slightly from 43% in 2021.

  • Out of the 39% who approved, 78% were Democrats, 34% were independents and 5% were Republicans.
  • Vice President Kamala Harris' figures were almost identical to Biden's, with a 40% approval rating that decreased slightly from 44% in 2021.

As for congressional leaders, House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) received a 40% approval rating.

  • Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) had the lowest approval rating of any leader in the poll at 27%, down from 34% in 2021.
  • House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) had a 46% approval rating, which matched that of Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) when he held the same position in 2021, according to Gallup.
  • Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) had a 41% approval rating, down from 44%.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken (45%) and Attorney General Merrick Garland (44%) scored similarly.

The bottom line: Though Biden has recently received some of his lowest approval ratings yet, he is far from alone in receiving less than majority approval across top federal government officials.

Go deeper: How to read Biden's bad polls

Methodology: The poll surveyed 1,013 U.S. adults via telephone interviews between Dec. 1-20, 2023, and has a margin of sampling error of ±4 percentage points at the 95% confidence level.

Go deeper