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June 22, 2022 34 min

During his campaign for president and in his first year in office, Joe Biden tried to be all things to all people. But trying to govern on behalf of such a broad political coalition has left his administration with something of an identity crisis.

In alarming figures for Democrats ahead of the midterms, Mr. Biden’s approval rating has reached the lowest level of his presidency, while 70 percent of Americans say that the country is on the wrong track.

Guest: Alexander Burns, a national political correspondent for The New York Times.

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Background reading: 

  • Confidential polling data obtained by The Times highlights the biggest challenges for Mr. Biden and his party in this election year.
  • The $1.9 trillion pandemic-relief law unleashed a giant wave of spending on local construction projects and programs. But Democratic candidates aren’t getting much credit for it.
  • For more information on today’s episode, visit nytimes.com/thedaily. Transcripts of each episode will be made available by the next workday. 

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