“If it is a referendum on the president, they will lose. And they know that. They also know that crime is a huge vulnerability for Democrats, I would say one of the biggest vulnerabilities,” Psaki said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sept. 25.
On the contrary, Psaki said that if the focus of the midterm elections is on the “most extreme” party, mentioning House Minority leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) by name, the Democrats will secure a victory in November.
With a little more than 40 days to go before the November elections, Biden’s public approval rating remains low. According to a recent Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll, 39 percent of Americans approved of the president, while 57 percent disapproved.
Additionally, 67 percent of the respondents said the United States was heading in the wrong direction, while 21 percent said the country was on the right track.
Another recent Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll found that 50 percent of Americans thought Biden “should do more” on “blocking illegal immigrants” from entering the United States.
Even Democrats are abandoning Biden as the party’s nominee for president in 2024. According to the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll, just 35 percent of Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents prefer Biden for the 2024 nomination, while 56 percent say the party should pick someone else.
Some Republicans have long billed the midterm elections as a referendum on Biden, most famously former President Donald Trump.
“This election is a referendum on skyrocketing inflation, rampant crime, soaring murders, crushing gas prices, millions and millions of illegal aliens pouring across our border, race and gender indoctrination, converting our schools,” Trump said during a campaign rally in Pennsylvania on Sept. 3.
Trump added, “And above all, this election is a referendum on the corruption and extremism of Joe Biden and the radical Democrat Party.”
Also on Sunday, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), a member of the House Judiciary Committee, wrote on Twitter that “It’s not breaking news Democrats don’t want the midterm elections to be a referendum on Biden.”
Earlier this month, Joe O’Dea, the GOP candidate for senator in Colorado, also said the November race is a referendum on the president.
“This election is a referendum on the trillions in spending and debt by Joe Biden and Michael Bennet that’s caused this inflation crisis,” O’Dea wrote on Twitter, who is facing incumbent Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.).
Psaki also said she has been following the senate race in Pennsylvania, where Lt. Gov. John Fetterman is facing Republican candidate Mehmet Oz, noting that Republicans have been spending money on ads portraying the Democrat candidate as soft on crime.
“What’s been interesting to me is it’s always you follow the money, and where are people spending money,” Psaki said. “And in Pennsylvania, the Republicans have been spending millions of dollars on the air on crime ads against Fetterman because that’s where they see his vulnerability.”
She added, “So, yes, the economy is hanging over everything. But you do have to look at state-by-state factors, and crime is a huge issue in the Pennsylvania race.”
Oz and Fetterman are scheduled for a televised debate on Oct. 25. On Sunday, Oz took to Twitter to say he has a different approach to border management compared to his opponent.
“John Fetterman would be a rubber stamp for Biden’s reckless border policies & make the crisis at our southern border even worse,” Oz wrote on Twitter. “Securing our border may not be Biden or Fetterman’s top priority, but I’ll do everything I can to address this issue.”