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By Jason Lange

WASHINGTON, Nov 1 (Reuters)President Joe Biden’s approval rating edged higher with just a week to go before U.S. midterm elections when his Democratic Party is expected to lose control of the House of Representatives, a Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll completed on Tuesday found.

The two-day national poll found that 40% of Americans approve of Biden’s job performance, a percentage point higher than a week earlier.

Despite the increase, Biden’s approval rating remains near the lowest levels of his presidency, and his unpopularity is helping drive the view that Republicans will win control of the House and possibly also the Senate on Nov. 8.

Control of even one chamber of Congress would give Republicans the power to bring Biden’s legislative agenda to a halt.

Taking office in January 2021 in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, Biden’s term has been marked by the economic scars of the global health crisis, including soaring inflation. This year, his approval rating drifted as low as 36% in May and June.

In this week’s Reuters/Ipsos poll, about a third of respondents picked the economy as the country’s biggest problem, a much larger share than the one in 10 who picked crime or the end of national abortion rights following the Supreme Court’s June decision.

The poll, conducted online in English throughout the United States, gathered responses from 1,004 adults, including 455 Democrats and 355 Republicans. It has a credibility interval – a measure of precision – of 4 percentage points either way.

(Reporting by Jason Lange; editing by Jonathan Oatis)

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