“Heating costs are up, grocery costs are up, and you have a president talking about spending all of this additional money and focusing on voting,” he said. “People asked me 23 different things, and voting ended up dead last.”
Some lawmakers and top Republican strategists argue that with Mr. Biden’s numbers sagging and his policies floundering, he is doing their job for them.
“When your opponents are hanging themselves, don’t cut the rope, and that’s what we see the Democrats doing here,” said Jeff Roe, the founder of Axiom Strategies, a political consulting firm that has worked for Gov. Glenn Youngkin of Virginia and Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, both Republicans. “All we need to do is stay out of the way.”
Republicans on Capitol Hill point to the withdrawal from Afghanistan last summer — a tumultuous period during which a suicide bombing at the Kabul airport killed 13 U.S. service members — as the turning point for a once-popular administration. Internal Republican polls showed Mr. Biden losing six percentage points in his approval rating at that time, a decline that he has not managed to reverse.
“Republicans have a lot of significant, deep problems, but Democrats have been so bad that it made it really easy to overlook them,” said Brendan Buck, a former adviser to the past two Republican speakers of the House, Paul D. Ryan and John A. Boehner. Republicans are still dealing with the culture wars and populism that may pose serious long-term demographic challenges, he said, but for now the Democrats have overshadowed those fissures.
Mr. McCarthy, who is in line to be speaker if Republicans win the House, has been increasingly bullish about the prospect, predicting that 70 Democratic-held seats will be competitive.
There are some bright spots for Mr. Biden. Democrats view his opportunity to appoint a Supreme Court justice as a chance for a change in focus and a moment for him to claim a high-profile victory. Mr. Biden has highlighted the 3.9 percent unemployment rate as part of the recovery he promised to Americans, and his top aides have underscored that he has overseen the strongest economic growth in decades.