First Read is a briefing from “Meet the Press”, and the NBC Political Unit about the most important political stories of the day and why they are important.

WASHINGTON — President Biden agrees in principle to meet Putin if Russia does not invade Ukraine. … The U.S. warns Russia plans to kill and detain dissidents and critics in Ukraine. A poll has shown that Texas’ attorney general race may be heading to a runoff. NBC’s Suzanne Gamboa dives deep into the Texas-28 Cuellar vs.-Cisneros battle. The Texas primary is only eight days away.

First, the Democratic coalition that voted for Joe Biden to defeat Donald Trump is in disarray almost a year and half after the 2020 election.

Take a look at Biden’s overall approval rating in our NBC News survey.

  • The president’s job rating among young Americans aged 18-34 has fallen from 56 percent in April to 40 percent (-16 points).

  • Biden’s rating among those who backed Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren in 2020 Dem primaries has fallen from 88 to 74 percent over the same period (-14).

  • It has dropped from 61 to 36 percent among independents (-25).

  • The drop in women’s IQ has been 10 points (from 61 percent in April, to 51 percent now, -10).

  • It was another 10 points for whites with college degrees.

  • It has increased from 59 to 48 percent among Latinos (-11).

  • The president’s job rating among Blacks, the most important voting bloc for Biden’s win in the Dem nomination, has dropped from 83 percent to 64 percent in April (-19).

All of these groups voted together in 2020 to overthrow Trump by 4.5 percentage points, 51.3 percent to 46.6 percent.

This Democratic coalition was broken in 2022.

It’s also one of the main reasons that the Democrats’ midterm outlook, at least for now, looks so grim for them.

Data Download: The number for the day is… 39%

This is the percentage of Republican primary vote that Texas Attorney-General Ken Paxton received in the most recent Dallas Morning News/University of Texas at Tyler survey. He would be forced to go into a runoff if he reaches that number in the next week’s primary (in Texas, candidates do not move on to runoffs until one has won the majority of votes).

Paxton, who has been plagued by fraud allegations_ for a long time, is closely followed by George P. Bush (25 percent). With 13 percent, Eva Guzman, a former state Supreme Court Justice, is followed by Louie Gohmert with 7 percent.

This poll shows that former Democratic Rep. Beto has a favorable rating of 40 percent (and 46 percent unfavorable rating). He is running for governor against incumbent Republican Greg Abbott. His approval rating is 50 percent with 46 percent disapproving his job performance.

You need to be familiar with the following numbers:

8 The number days before Texas’ primary.

25 The number (including eight gold) of the U.S. Olympic Team that were won, enough for fifth place in the Winter Olympics. (Norway had the most medals with 37).

1971 In 1971, the federal observances of George Washington’s birthday were moved to the 3rd Monday in February. Fun fact: What’s now known as “Presidents’ day” is still called “Washington’s Birthday”.

$15 Million: How many billionaires Larry Ellison gave to a super-PAC supporting Sen. Tim Scott, South Carolina, as reported by Politico.

Roundup of the midterm

Both parties are dealing with their own intraparty dynamics as the primary season approaches. The House Democratic retirements have opened up more opportunities to progressives who want to move the caucus leftwards, NBC’s Alex Seitz Wald reports.

According to Politico, House Republicans who voted against Trump’s impeachment are preparing for races against Trump’s primary challengers.

Redistricting and the FBI raid on Texas Democratic Rep. Henry Cuellar’s home, campaign office, and personal property make it difficult for Cuellar to win next week’s primary against Jessica Cisneros. Suzanne Gamboa, NBC, reports from Laredo.

The Congressional Leadership Fund is a super PAC that aligns with House GOP leadership and is spending $150,000 in order to support Rep. Van Taylor (R-Texas), ahead of next week’s primary, according to an FEC filing over the weekend. Taylor is spending on the airwaves as he faces challengers from his left.

Former Senator Jack Danforth (R-Mo.) called for an independent candidate in the state’s open Senate race. He told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch such a candidate would be “very, very well-funded.”

Ad watch: Texas’ primary battle

A little over a week before Texas’ March 1st primary, the conservative Congressional Leadership Fund has launched a new in Houston to support Morgan Luttrell’s candidacy for the Republican nomination.

The commercial highlights Luttrell’s military service, before the narrator informs viewers that Morgan Luttrell has been sent to Congress. Luttrell will fight for Texas’ way of life and defeat the Biden-Pelosi agenda.

Key Republicans have been split between Christian Collins and Luttrell, his most prominent opponent, the conservative activist Christian Collins. Multiple law enforcement officials, including former Governor., endorse Luttrell. Rick Perry, Rep. Dan Crenshaw, and Lt. Governor. Dan Patrick. Collins has been endorsed by Senator Ted Cruz (for whom he used work) and the House Freedom Caucus.

ICYMI: What other happenings around the world

Queen Elizabeth II has been positive for Covid.

Some allies have been pressuring the White House to keep the pause on student loans through midterms.

A case concerning the Trump administration’s ” Stay in Mexico” asylum policy will be heard by the Supreme Court.

The CDC isn’t publishing all of the Covid data it has been collecting.

NPR reports on the difficult rollout of the First Public Option Health Care Plan in Washington.

After suffering from kidney cancer, Republican Rep. Jim Hagedorn (Minnesota ) passed away at 59.