News that could see Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) depart her congressional role earlier than expected emerged on Friday following the release of her latest approval rating. Much like Feinstein’s declining health, the 89-year-old senator saw her approval rating nosedive, dropping to about 30% among likely voters.
👍👍👍’Declined Dramatically’: Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s Approval Plunges — Again https://t.co/T5P0o7J1Ls
— Tim Latimer – FIGHTERS FOR FREEDOM #2 !!! (@timlatimer365) June 11, 2023
The Public Policy Institute of California conducted the polling and saw 219 adults and likely voters surveyed. The institute surveyed residents in the Orange and San Diego counties, combining both counties into one geographic region.
Feinstein’s rating has steadily decreased over the past 14 months, with the latest report showing a 10% drop from March 2022, when her approval rating stood at 41%. The latest figure also showed a 7% drop from October 2022, when only 37% of likely voters in Orange and San Diego counties said they approved of the 89-year-old.
Feinstein also suffered low approval ratings from four other geographical regions surveyed. The regions include Central Valley, Inland Empire, San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles. Three of the regions reported approval ratings of 28%, with Los Angeles coming in at 36%.
Other polls showed that two-thirds of voters in a statewide survey in California think Feinstein is not fit to serve in the Senate. According to Fred Smoller, a Chapman University political science professor, Feinstein’s low approval rating is down to her failing health.
“A once very popular senator has lost a lot of support because, unfortunately, she’s perceived by both the left and the right as not well enough to do her job effectively,” said Smoller. “She’s under attack by her own party, (Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez) and the ‘squad’ who are calling for her to step down. She was once very popular,” Smoller said, “but has declined tremendously.”
The 89-year-old suffered an outbreak of shingles in March. The virus spread to her face and neck areas, causing vision and balance impairments as well as facial paralysis. The virus prevented her from performing her duties, leaving her out of the Senate for several weeks.
Even though Feinstein returned in May, the virus had significantly harmed her physical appearance. According to The New York Times, The left side of Feinstein’s face was frozen with one eye nearly shut. The Times also reported that the 89-year-old seemed disoriented as her aide wheeled her around in her wheelchair and she was heard complaining about something stuck in her eye.