Mike Donilon, senior adviser to President Biden, argues in a memo to White House senior staff that GOP opposition to the COVID rescue package would shrink the party’s already declining national support.
What they’re saying: “There seems to be a growing conventional wisdom that it is either politically smart — or, at worst, cost-free — for the GOP to adopt an obstructionist, partisan, base-politics posture,” Donilon writes in the two-page memo, obtained by Axios. “However, there is lots of evidence that the opposite is true: … this approach has been quite damaging to them.”
Between the lines: The memo cites a Morning Consult poll showing a Biden approval rating of 62% with registered voters. Just 23% of registered voters think the Republican Party is going in the right direction, while 63% say the party is on the wrong track.
- Other data points: Tens of thousands of Republicans across the country have switched party affiliation since the Capitol riot, the N.Y. Times reports. The Economist/YouGov polling finds a decline in voters calling themselves Republicans since November (from 42% to 37%).
- “[Y]ou see a party shrinking its appeal in this country — not growing it,” Donilon writes. “Opposing President Biden’s American Rescue Plan only exacerbates Republicans’ predicament. … [T]he GOP is putting itself at odds with a rescue package supported overwhelmingly by the American people.”
Polls put support for Biden’s American Rescue Plan at 68% (Quinnipiac) or more.
- Donilon called opposition to the plan “politically isolating”: “The country is looking for action. For progress. For solutions. On COVID. On the economy. You see it and hear it all over the country. Voters are hurting.”