Bernie Sanders approval rating higher than Biden and Harris as he champions minimum wage and stimulus checks

White House says US president ‘stands by’ inclusion of $15 proposals despite Republican push back

Gino Spocchia
Wednesday 24 February 2021 14:12 GMT
Joe Biden marks over 500,000 Covid deaths in the US: 'We have to resist becoming numb to the sorrow'
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Bernie Sanders’s approval rating is currently higher than both Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, according to a new poll.

The ratings come as the senator calls for a $15 (£11) minimum wage to be included as part of the $1.9 trillion (£1.2 trillion) coronavirus stimulus passing through Congress this week.

Mr Sanders had a net favourability rating of 10 points among survey respondents, according to the poll released on Tuesday by The Economist/YouGov while the US president had a net favourability rating of 8 points, and the vice president 5 points.

49 per cent said they had a "somewhat" or "very" favourable view of Mr Sanders, while 39 per cent said they had a very or ”somewhat” or “very” unfavourable view.

Mr Biden, meanwhile, was viewed favourably by 50 per cent of respondents, and unfavourably by another 42 per cent, while Ms Harris was viewed favourably by 49 per cent and unfavourably by 43 per cent.

Mitch McConnell, the Senate Republican minority leader, was viewed unfavourably by 65 per cent of respondents to the survey, and favourable by as few as 17 per cent, after previously blocking proposals for $2,000 stimulus checks to be sent as part of a coronavirus stimulus bill.

Mr McConnell said on Monday that the Biden administration’s $1.9 trillion (£1.2 trillion) package was “more band-aid policies”, while two Republican senators proposed a lower $10 (£7) minimum wage increase.

As doubt remains over the provision’s inclusion in the $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus package, the parliamentarian of the Senate, Elizabeth MacDonough, is expected to make a decision on whether or not the provision can be included in the stimulus package in the coming days.

The stimulus is expected to be passed by a process of budget reconciliation, which requires legislation to have more than an “incidental” impact on the overall budget.

That would allow the stimulus to pass the Senate with a simple majority of 51 votes, and without 60 votes from Republican senators to overcome a filibuster that is typically required to pass bills.

Mr Biden, according to the White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Tuesday, “stands by” the $15 minimum wage proposal despite fears that some Democrats could vote against the provision, reported Newsweek.

Mr Sanders, meanwhile, argued on Saturday that the historic wage increase was comparable to a Republican tax bill in 2017 that allowed the opening of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for oil drilling and repeal of some provisions of Affordable Care Act', as CNN reported.

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