Saturday | June 08, 2002
Bush's downward spiral
Two polls released yesterday confirm that Bush's sky-high popularity has a short shelf life. I had argued that barring any new terrorist attack, Bush would continue to drop 2-3 points a month before stabilizing in the high 50s. However, the "trifecta" of Enron investigations, 9-11 investigations, and the Halliburton-influenced stock market collapse last week together helped chip seven points off Bush's approval ratings in one week.
Gallup has Bush's approval ratings at 70 percent. Republicans still approve of Bush at a clip of 96 percent, but Democrats and Independents are abandoning the president in droves. However, even that 96 percent from Republicans is a soft number, given the electoral beating Bush's handpicked candidates have suffered in recent Republican primary elections.
Everyone's favorite fair and unbiased source of news has Bush's favorability rating at 69 percent, down eight points from a week ago. What's especially telling about Fox's poll is the question: "How confident are you in the United State's ability to handle the problem of terrorism?". Only 54 percent of respondents said they were "absolutely confident" or "pretty confident" the US would win. Those numbers have to be terrifying to a presidency built entirely on the War on Terror.
The more the Bush Administration shrugs its shoulders at problems confronting the nation ("the US will get hit with another terrorist attack", "Colorado will become a desert thanks to global warming," "people losing their life pensions and jobs because of corporate greed is the beauty of capitalism," etc.), the more Bush's poll numbers will bleed.
And fair or not (and it really isn't fair), it's easy to contrast the Clinton years with the Bush years. Peace and prosperity versus perpetual war, recession, corporate excesses and greed, constant fear of terrorist attacks, massive defecits and ballooning debts. And Karen Hughes has left the building. Bush is in trouble.Posted June 08, 2002 09:47 AM | Comments (0)