Democratic views on how US President Joe Biden is handling the conflict between Israel and Hamas have rebounded slightly, according to a new poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.
The shift occurs during a time in which Biden and top US officials expressed increased concern about civilian casualties in the Gaza Strip, emphasized the need for a future independent Palestinian state and helped secure the release of hostages held by Hamas during a temporary truce. Biden’s support for Israel’s right to defend itself has remained steadfast.
Fifty-nine percent of Democrats approve of Biden’s approach to the conflict, up from 50% in November. His latest standing is roughly equivalent to Democrats’ 57% approval rating for him on the issue in an August poll, conducted well before the war began on Oct. 7 when Hamas attacked Israel, killing some 1,200 people, most of them civilians and took some 240 hostage.
Still, the issue remains divisive among Democrats, who are less enthusiastic about Biden’s handling of the war than his overall job performance. Seventy-five percent of Democrats says Biden is doing well as president, also up slightly from 69% last month. His approval rating among US adults stands at 41%.