An incoherent look at Biden’s popularity

President Biden. Photo (cc) 2020 by Gage Skidmore.

Is President Biden historically unpopular? Or is he simply experiencing a drop-off that’s similar to what many of his predecessors have gone through?

Nate Cohn of The New York Times tries his hand at analyzing Biden’s popularity — and I don’t know what he’s saying. Consider this:

The president’s approval ratings have sunk into the low-to-mid 40s, putting him into rather lonely historical company. In the era of modern polling, only Donald J. Trump had a lower approval rating at this early stage of his term.

Whoa! That’s not good. But then there’s this:

Many presidents have won re-election after watching their ratings fall to similar depths during their first two years in office.

And this:

Ronald Reagan, Harry Truman, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama all saw their ratings sink as low as Mr. Biden’s are today, before ultimately recovering to win re-election.

Cohn is a numbers guy, and I regard him as one of the more reliable journalists at the Times. But this is just incoherent.