Friday, February 10, 2006

No Post-SOTU Bounce For Bushie

Oh, well. When your administration is mired in mud, it's hard to get out. First, the AP-Ipsos poll:

President Bush's marks on overall job approval and for handling the economy are mired near their lowest levels despite a spike in consumer confidence over the past month, an AP-Ipsos poll found.

Bush's job approval is now at 40 percent and his approval on handling the economy at 39 percent. Those numbers haven't budged over the last month even with the public's confidence in the economy growing and the president delivering an upbeat State of the Union address.

Next, Gallup:

PRINCETON, NJ -- President George W. Bush's State of the Union address on Jan. 31 did little to move his overall job approval rating, according to a new Gallup Poll. Roughly 4 in 10 Americans continue to say they approve of Bush, with a majority saying they disapprove. The poll also asked Americans to rate Bush on six issues facing the nation today. Of these issues, Bush scores highest on terrorism and lowest on energy and healthcare. There have only been modest variations in Americans' ratings of these issues since late January, with the exception of a slight decrease in his healthcare policy rating.

The poll, conducted Feb. 6-9, 2006 finds that 42% of Americans approve and 55% disapprove of the way Bush is handling his job as president. Bush's approval ratings have been extremely stable in the low-40% range across eight separate Gallup Polls conducted since early December 2005. His previous approval rating was 43% in late January. Americans' approval ratings of Bush were slightly lower in November 2005, reaching the lowest point of his presidency, at 37% in the middle of that month. Bush's current approval rating is slightly lower than his 45.8% average for 2005.

Finally, the Pew poll has Bush at 40%, up 2 points from January.

Not very good for the preznit.

And the Pew poll has more good news for Democrats as does FOX News as well:

Two surveys released Thursday yielded more evidence of the challenging political environment facing the Republicans as they defend their congressional majorities this election year.

Polls by the Pew Research Center for People and the Press and Fox News/Opinion Dynamics gave Democrats a firm if not overwhelming advantage on a generic congressional ballot test.

The Pew poll reported that registered voters, by 50 percent to 41 percent, said they would prefer an unspecified Democratic congressional candidate over an unspecified Republican congressional candidate.

The Fox News/Opinion Dynamics poll asked if it would be better for the nation if Democrats or Republicans controlled Congress after the election; respondents chose the Democrats by 42 percent to 34 percent, with 18 percent saying they didn’t know or it wouldn’t make a difference.

Republicans have tended to play down generic congressional ballot surveys, saying that they do not reflect their structural advantages in individual House races and the narrow field of highly competitive contests.

Democrats also have often have performed better in surveys of registered voters, such as the Pew and Fox surveys, than in those that screen for voters who are most likely to actually vote in the elections.

The Pew survey found that 59 percent would like to see their member of Congress re-elected, compared to 28 percent who would not. Though the “re-elect” figure seems reasonably comforting for incumbent, the “un-elect” percentage is actually higher than in the 1990, 1998 or 2002 midterm elections.

The report issued with the Pew poll said the public’s eroded confidence in President Bush — over his handling of the Iraq war, the economy and the aftermath of the Hurricane Katrina catastrophe — is at least a partial factor in the Republicans’ shaky congressional numbers.

“President Bush’s unpopularity has become a drag on his party’s prospects in the fall,” said the Pew analysis, which pointed to a specific finding: 31 percent of respondents said they consider their vote for Congress as a vote against Bush, while 18 percent said they consider their vote as supporting the president. A 47 percent plurality said their views of Bush would not influence their votes for Congress.

Respondents said they preferred the Democrats on 10 of 12 issues the Pew survey identified. Democrats had their largest edges over the Republicans on the environment (32 percentage points) and health care (22 points).

And despite the GOP’s consistent efforts to brand the Democrats as advocates of increased government spending and taxes, Democrats also held advantages among the poll’s respondents on reducing the deficit (12 points) and taxes (11 points). Republicans held advantages on the issues of fighting crime (7 points) and terrorism (16 points).

Respondents to the Fox News/Opinion Dynamics poll gave Democrats the edge over Republicans on eight of 12 issues that survey selected. The largest Democratic advantages came on health care (23 points) and the federal deficit (20 points), while Republicans enjoyed their largest leads on terrorism (14 points) and family values (10 points).

The Pew survey contacted 1,502 adults between Feb. 1-5. The Fox News/Opinion Dynamics survey contacted 900 registered voters Tuesday and Wednesday evenings. Each polls has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

Low approval numbers for Bush dragging down the whole Republican Party. And then you have all the negative news stories surrounding the White House/GOP lately:

Brownie blaming White House for Katrina mess

Abramoff says he met with Bush at least 12 times and has pictures to prove it

Ex-CIA official says administration sexed up pre-war Iraq intell

Republicans are turning on Bush and criticizing NSA domestic spying program
Libby says White House Superiors Told Him To Leak Classified Material In CIA Leak Case

Hell, do you remember a couple of months ago when we heard how the State of the Union speech was going to get the ball rolling again for the preznit?

Turns out not so much.

And judging by all the firestorms embroiling the White House right now, it's kinda hard to see how they really do get the ball rolling agian, or at least get it unstuck from the sewer grate it currently is in.

If anything, things are probably going to get a lot worse before they get a lot better.

Remember, there still some frogmarching to come in both the CIA leak case and the Abramoff case.

If Rove, Ney, Delay and a few other prominent or semi-prominent Republicans get perp-walked for the cable media, I'd have to say the GOP is going to have a really hard time countering the "Culture of Corruption" meme this November.

I'd also have to say the perp-walking won't help the preznit's poll numbers any either.

It's remarkable. Yet you can't count these guys out.
Rove is reprehensible, but a cutting-edge political genius.
You're right - even w/ all the scandals/foreign policy catastrophes/budget deficits/economic bad news for the middle and working classes/health care problems/pension issues, Bush has managed to bottom out at 38%-43%.

Which means some 38% to 43% of the country don't see these people running the country as the incompetent, arrogant, corrupt idiots they really are.

Scary stuff.
Did you read "What's the Matter with Kansas?" I repeatedly marvel that these crooks are able to dupe people into voting for them, even if we disregard the very real possibility that no one has yet done so.

This book gave me the most viable explanation I'd ever seen, and made me very sad, actually. Fox News is something else.
I'm familiar with the book. It really is troubling that so many people can be so swayed by wedged issues like flag-burning, school prayer, and gay marriage.

But they can.

I really believe it will take a serious economic downturn before people start to realize that a lot of the wedge issue stuff is bullshit, but the economic warfare they're waging against the working and middle classes is for keeps.

Unfortunately, between the bread, the circuses, and the religion, most people haven't been smart enough to catch on yet.

But hit the country with 50%+ unemployment, miles and miles of "Bushvilles"across the landscape, tons of foreclosed houses and I bet people will be less likely to vote because a candidate comes from a state that supported legalizing gay marriage.
According to the book, the serious economic downturn has pretty much taken place, turning towns of Kansas into virtual ghost towns, and still the folks vehemently vote for Republican "values."

He wrote a paragrah about the angry farmers, carrying pitchforks and torches, approaching homes of the obscenely wealthy.

"We are here," they proclaim, "to lower your taxes."
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