RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – The United States is suffering the highest inflation rate in 40 years. All that comes with that distinction weighs heavily on a party trying to retain control of the House and Senate.

“That’s a task that’s increasingly difficult when people’s 401Ks are not looking as good as they used to, people’s gas prices continue to rise or at least not fall in any sort of marketable sense,” said Chris Cooper, political science professor at Western Carolina University.

It’s something President Joe Biden is expected to address Thursday in a state he lost in 2020 and where a CBS 17 poll has his approval rating at 44 percent.

“He has got to get his approval rating above water or else he’s going to have a really tough Congress he’s facing in less than a year,” Cooper said.

Biden’s appearance in Greensboro comes less than week after former President Donald Trump’s rally in Selma. Redistricting, congressional retirements, and an open U.S. Senate race has Republicans rallying at full speed.

The aggressive approach and ability to rouse the crowd is something Cooper said Democrats have to think about.

“I think there was a sense, at least among some folks, that it was time to have somebody who was frankly a little more boring, maybe not quite as out front as Donald Trump, but in terms of drawing the attention of the average American, the average voter, the average North Carolinian, it’s an incredibly tall task for Joe Biden or any Democratic candidate.”

Wake County’s congressional representative, Deborah Ross, said she will join Biden at North Carolina A&T University.

“The fact that he is giving this speech from the largest historically black college in the United States. So, I think the messaging is about North Carolina but the messaging is also about being at an HBCU in North Carolina,” Cooper said.