The Democrats never saw this latest problem coming.
It has Nancy Pelosi on edge.
Nancy Pelosi received the one doomsday report that will send her into retirement.
Joe Biden’s approval numbers were already sinking before the botched withdrawal from Afghanistan.
Failures on COVID, jobs, illegal immigration and inflation sent Biden’s poll numbers tumbling.
Democrats hoped that as August turned to September the left could shift the debate on to issues like the Texas pro-life law and so-called “climate change.”
Biden and his allies also banked on the fact that polling data showing the public supportive of ending the war in Afghanistan would override the polls showing the American people overwhelmingly disapproving of Biden’s failed withdrawal strategy which led to the deaths of 13 U.S. soldiers and the Taliban now essentially holding at least 100 Americans hostage.
The early returns on that strategy suggest it is a massive failure.
Numbers from NewsWhip showed that from August 28 to September 3, stories on Afghanistan posted to social media generated over 43 million interactions while posts about Hurricane Ida generated a little over six million interactions.
Why it matters: Democrats are banking on the Afghanistan chaos having little impact on the 2022 midterms. But the data, which comes as Biden’s approval rating slid underwater, shows the potential potency of a story unfolding thousands of miles away.
By the numbers: Afghanistan stories generated 6.5 times more engagement on social media than those about Hurricane Ida and its remnants in the Northeast, the second-biggest story last week.
That can’t be explained by simply the volume of coverage. Afghanistan stories generated a per-article rate of 290 social media likes, comments or shares — compared with 54 interactions for each storm-related article.
Understanding this reality, Pelosi tried to spin the Afghanistan withdrawal into a supposed achievement calling the haphazard evacuation “remarkable.”
“This is never easy,” the California Democrat told reporters on Thursday. “It’s not always complete right from the start, but it was remarkable, even though it got off to a hazy start.”
Pelosi also praised “the historic evacuation of 120,000 people,” declaring, “I commend the administration for that.”
Polls show the American people do not share Pelosi’s sentiment.
And it could spell Pelosi’s career ending in embarrassing fashion.
Rumors floated around Washington for months that Pelosi is waiting until after the midterm elections to announce her retirement.
Pelosi announcing she intended this to be her last term before the election would serve as waving the white flag of surrender before Americans made their decision.
But the political terrain for 2022 may already be shaped in late 2021.
And that could spell bad news for Pelosi.
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