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President Bush: How low can he go?

 
 
nimh
 
Reply Thu 21 Jun, 2007 08:50 pm
A new Newsweek poll, taken 6/18-19/07, now has job approval for George Bush at 26%.

Thats the lowest single poll result he's had in the last two and a half years, which means it's probably the lowest in his presidency so far (since the last two years have been his most unpopular).

Now Newsweek's polls always have the President's job approval a couple of points lower than most polls (a so-called "house effect"). But even looking at the average of the last number of polls out, as pollster.com does, approval has now dropped to under 30% for the first time (29,9% to be exact). The Newsweek poll therefore is no outlier.

Here's the graph from pollster.com, with each dot representing a separate poll (and you can see the Newsweek one at bottom right), and the blue line representing a rolling average (trendline).

http://www.pollster.com/blogs/1BushApproval2ndTerm20070619.png

(click to enlarge)

Read all the analysis you'd ever wanted to know, courtesy of Charles Franklin at pollster.com, here.

What has triggered the latest downturn?

Is it Iraq or is it immigration? Says Franklin:

"The sharpness of the decline is striking. The change-point for approval is April 23, corresponding to the week of the Congressional vote for deadlines and a fund cutoff in Iraq and the President's subsequent veto. It precedes the immigration debate, though that debate may have sustained the decline. (On the other hand there is little evidence that immigration accelerated the decline which was already underway.)"

Republicans leaving

One thing the analysis points out is that the reason Bush is now dropping under 30% is that Republicans, finally, are deserting him too. The Newsweek poll finds approval at an almost non-existent 6% among Democrats, a horrible 23% among independents and a weakening 60% among Republicans.

For a comparison over time on this, look at the latest Gallup poll. Gallup polls tend to have the President's job approval slightly higher than most polls on average, but also tend to fluctuate more drastically than most polls. But the last one out was pretty average, with Bush's job approval at 32%. It had his approval at 8% among Democrats, 24% among independents and 73% among Republicans.

Note that the only difference between the two polls is that Gallup has Bush's support among Republicans still higher. But in the Gallup poll too, Bush's numbers have been slipping away especially among Republicans in the past year. That is in fact the main thing driving his numbers down now: -compare the Gallup data from March 2006 and this month:

GALLUP: GW Bush Job approval
March 2006 -> June 2007

Overall
38% -> 32%

Republicans
82% -> 73%

Independents
27% -> 24%

Democrats
10% -> 8%

Worse than LBJ; closing in on Carter

An old post of Franklin's at his own site Political Arithmetik, in March 2006, compared the lowest point in the polls of each post-WW2 presidency.

The worst any of 'em did was Truman, who fell to 22%. Nixon dropped to 23%; Carter to 28% and Bush Senior to 29%.

Thats it; those are the Presidents who've done worse, popularity-wise, than GWB. And with his trendline now at 29,9%, GWB is just two points away from Jimmy Carter's alltime low. The historic polls he cites are all Gallup, so if you prefer a more puristically apples-to-apples approach, it's this month's 32% for GWB against the 29% for his father and the 28% for Carter.

Either way it's already distinctly lower than the lowest LBJ ever fell during the Vietnam war, which was 35%. Ford, Reagan and Clinton have also never been as unpopular as George Bush is now.

So how low will he go? How low will his job approval numbers sink - on average I mean, of course, taking Franklin's trend estimate, not in any one single poll? Cast your vote..
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Type: Discussion • Score: 2 • Views: 1,696 • Replies: 17
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nimh
 
  1  
Reply Fri 22 Jun, 2007 12:48 pm
baba-bump
0 Replies
 
Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Fri 22 Jun, 2007 12:51 pm
I submit that he will set new records for lows, especially if he pushes this immigration deal through.

He isn't going anywhere any time soon; he's going to be stubborn on the war this fall; he's going to resist congressional subpoenas. None of this is going to endear him any further with the electorate.

If Libby goes to jail immediately, without a pardon, Bush will definitely sink lower...

Cycloptichorn

ps. Bush at 27% today in ARG
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  1  
Reply Fri 22 Jun, 2007 01:46 pm
On the plus side of the job approval ratings, democrats have turned away from Bush by a mere two percent. There's loyalty for you.

There may be some percentage of any population which is so enamored of authority that pretty much nothing would disengage their attachment to a figure who represents that for them. The previous presidential polling low points suggest it might be around 20%.

Further, many Republicans/conservatives cannot reject Bush in any complete or logically consistent manner because to do so would be to negate many of the ideological pillars that support the New Conservative movement. They'll manage to muddle through, if uncomfortably, conveniently forgetting what they so recently wrote on the "who is the greatest president ever?" thread, and much else as well.

That graph won't go below 20%. The drop from 30 to 20 will bump into those factors I just noted and the graph will level. I'd be surprised if it went lower than 23 or 24.
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  1  
Reply Tue 17 Jul, 2007 09:39 am
Quote:

Two new polls at the end of last week find approval of President Bush a bit above recent trend estimates. The Associated Press poll, taken 7/9-11/07, found approval at 33% with disapproval at 65%. A Newsweek poll taken 7/11-12/07 got approval at 29%, disapproval at 64%. Prior to these polls the trend estimate was 27.2%. With the two added, the trend estimate now stands at 28.0%.

This is the first time we've seen a pair of polls above trend in a while. Balance above and below trend has been the recent rule. For AP, this is a 1 point gain from their early June poll, while for Newsweek it is a 3 point gain over the previous week. Neither would qualify as a statistically significant change.

I'm normally quite cautious about suggesting a change of trend based on only two polls. That caution is especially important here because the AP result at 33% is right on the margin of the 95% confidence interval, as close to an outlier as you can get. Indeed, without the Newsweek poll, AP would be a bit outside the 95% confidence interval.

But tossing caution to the wind for a moment, it wouldn't be a surprise if the President's sharp decline is due for some leveling out. Approval was stable from December through April, starting down around April 24th. Since then it has been sinking at a nearly constant rate for over two months. This has brought the trend in approval solidly into the 20s for the last 10 polls, not a simple "blip" down. But to sustain approval this low requires Republican support for Bush sinking below 60% or Independents sinking to the mid-teens. Democrats are already below 10%, so can't contribute much to further decline.
http://www.pollster.com/blogs/bush_approval_two_new_polls_tr_1.php
0 Replies
 
Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Tue 17 Jul, 2007 09:41 am
http://www.pollster.com/AAAPollsterBushApproval.png

Cycloptichorn
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  1  
Reply Sat 28 Jul, 2007 12:07 pm
As I said above, I doubt Bush can get much lower percentages. His base is highly ideological and they have a self-validating propaganda machine still in full swing.

Where further changes in perception/sentiment/polling can be expected or hoped for is in relationship to the broader new conservative movement which Bush was portrayed (correctly and not) as representing. I think that if such doesn't happen, and with some severity and longevity, the US probably won't be able to avoid a quickening and terminal voyage sunsetward.

Quote:
Fewer See Balance in High Court Decisions
Growing Numbers In Poll Say Bench Is 'Too Conservative'

By Robert Barnes and Jon Cohen
Washington Post Staff Writers
Sunday, July 29, 2007; Page A01

About half of the public thinks the Supreme Court is generally balanced in its decisions, but a growing number of Americans say the court has become "too conservative" in the two years since President Bush began nominating justices, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

Nearly a third of the public -- 31 percent -- thinks the court is too far to the right, a noticeable jump since the question was last asked in July 2005. That's when Bush nominated John G. Roberts Jr. to the court and, in the six-month period that followed, the Senate approved Roberts as chief justice and confirmed Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr.

The two have proved to be reliably conservative justices, and the increasingly polarized court this year moved to uphold restraints on abortion, restrict student speech rights and limit the ability of school districts to use race in student assignments, among other issues.

The public seems to have noticed the shift. The percentage who said the court is "too conservative" grew from 19 percent to 31 percent in the past two years, while those who said it is "generally balanced in its decisions" declined from 55 percent to 47 percent.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/07/28/AR2007072800645.html?hpid%3Dtopnews&sub=AR
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 Nov, 2007 02:38 pm
Well, Bush never did fall to Nixon- or Truman-like depths in his approval ratings, not on average anyhow: for every poll that did have him down to the mid-20s there was a concurrent one that still had him in the mid-30s.

But he's not doing any better either, and he's set to break another record:

Quote:
Bush's run of sub-40% approval ratings ties Nixon's

Gallup Guru
November 21, 2007

George W. Bush's job approval rating [in the Gallup poll - nimh] is now at 32%. Unless something unusual happens between now and the end of the month, November will be the 14th consecutive month in which Bush's job approval rating has been below 40% in Gallup's polling. His last 40% or higher rating came in September, 2006.

The not-so-good news for Bush this Thanksgiving is that he has now tied the presidential record left behind by Richard M. Nixon, who had sub-40% ratings for 14 months -- from July 1973 until he left office in August 1974.

The good news is that Bush still has a long way to go to match the record of Harry S Truman, who went from October 1950 through December 1952 with nary a Gallup job approval rating above 40%. By my calculations, if Bush doesn't rise above 40% in the months ahead, he will beat Truman's record of 26 months at the end of December next year -- just as he is preparing to leave office. [..]


Here's the last graph that pollster.com has available (updated Nov. 1):

http://www.pollster.com/AAAPollsterBushApproval380.png
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Feb, 2008 10:48 am
Quote:
Overall, 19% of Americans say that they approve of the way George W. Bush is handling his job as president, 77% disapprove, and 4% are undecided.
http://americanresearchgroup.com/economy/

Not sure where others have it now. But yikers!
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 May, 2008 07:22 pm
Forgot to cross-post this here from the Polls etc thread last week: Gallup now has President Bush with the highest disapproval rating of any president in the 70-year history of the Gallup Poll. Dude!

"The disapproval sets a new high for any president since Franklin Roosevelt. The previous record of 67% was reached by Harry Truman in January 1952."

"By 69%-27%, those polled say Bush's tenure in general has been a failure, not a success."

0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 May, 2008 07:28 pm
Plus, it's no longer just the Dems and Indys, who have long ago abandoned him too. It's the Republicans, at long last, as well:

Quote:
Bush Approval Rating Down to 60% Among Republicans

New low for his administration

At a time when George W. Bush's job approval rating has fallen to 28%, just 6 in 10 Republicans approve of the job he is doing, the lowest of his administration.


http://media.gallup.com/poll/graphs/0508BushLow1_k3x5a1.gif


Bush has had a 28% overall job approval rating in each of the last three Gallup Polls, the worst of his administration, and the worst for any president since Jimmy Carter's 28% approval rating in 1979. In the most recent poll, conducted May 1-3, Bush's approval rating among his own party's supporters has dropped to 60%.

Throughout his presidency, Bush has averaged 85% approval among Republicans, including a robust 92% his first term and 77% thus far in his second term. So the current figures among the GOP faithful represent a significant departure from the norm for the Bush presidency.

Lower support among Republicans is the primary mover behind the erosion in Bush's overall job approval rating in recent weeks. His approval ratings among Democrats and independents are already at low levels, and do not seem to be deteriorating much further.


http://media.gallup.com/poll/graphs/0508BushLow2_c4v6b4.gif
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 May, 2008 07:49 pm
nimh wrote:
Plus, it's no longer just the Dems and Indys, who have long ago abandoned him too. It's the Republicans, at long last, as well:

Quote:
Bush Approval Rating Down to 60% Among Republicans

New low for his administration

At a time when George W. Bush's job approval rating has fallen to 28%, just 6 in 10 Republicans approve of the job he is doing, the lowest of his administration.


http://media.gallup.com/poll/graphs/0508BushLow1_k3x5a1.gif


Bush has had a 28% overall job approval rating in each of the last three Gallup Polls, the worst of his administration, and the worst for any president since Jimmy Carter's 28% approval rating in 1979. In the most recent poll, conducted May 1-3, Bush's approval rating among his own party's supporters has dropped to 60%.

Throughout his presidency, Bush has averaged 85% approval among Republicans, including a robust 92% his first term and 77% thus far in his second term. So the current figures among the GOP faithful represent a significant departure from the norm for the Bush presidency.

Lower support among Republicans is the primary mover behind the erosion in Bush's overall job approval rating in recent weeks. His approval ratings among Democrats and independents are already at low levels, and do not seem to be deteriorating much further.


http://media.gallup.com/poll/graphs/0508BushLow2_c4v6b4.gif



I'm wondering if the Repub fall is sort of a cognitive dissonance thing?


You know how that theorizes that we tend to cling ever harder to beliefs that are important to us (in this case that Bush is a good President) the more evidence we receive to the contrary?


Sometimes we sort of go "ping" and drop the beliefs in a hurry....


What I am wondering is happening to the Repubs is that, as the end of the Presidency gets closer, the Bush people no longer feel as much emotion around the need to support him, and hence allow more negative evidence about his performance in?
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 May, 2008 09:35 pm
Yeah, there's something to that I think.

Bush is by now irrelevant. As long as he was the chief, and as long as he was the main target of Democratic attacks, Republicans will have felt an almost visceral need to justify his actions and decisions. Just because admitting his faults would be 'yielding ground' to the enemy. Because any road to the continuation of Republican/conservative power went through him, for better or for worse.

If you're an instinctive partisan and "your side's" victory or hold on power depends on this guy, I think your instincts will kick in to block any serious realisation or at least open acknowledgement of his flaws. Yeah, minor ones, he "hasn't been conservative enough," but no fundamental condemnation.

Now that he's irrelevant anyway, I guess even Republicans feel free to let the disappointment flow - there's hardly any political drawback to it anymore, after all.

So yeah, good point.
0 Replies
 
fishin
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 May, 2008 10:32 pm
My guess would be that with gas and food prices rising quickly and the housing market continuing to flounder, more of them simply see "legitimate" complaints against him as opposed to the "He's taking away all of our civil rights!" partisan nonsense.
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 May, 2008 11:05 pm
Also possible.

Although, thinking about it -- it's not like the economic problems are all new; and the reason that not just Dems, but Indys too, have already disliked Bush so much for so long was hardly the "He's taking away all of our civil rights!" stuff. There was Iraq, for one. Deeply impopular war for a long time already.

Maybe that's another difference though. The subject of Iraq was such an extremely polarising one. The more that Dems, and Indys too, turned against it, the more stubbornly partisan-minded Republicans seemed to stick with it. You're either a good patriot or you're not, no cutting and running, that kind of thing. I suppose that the economy is a much less polarising issue: everyone suffers and grumbles. There's much less of an emotive ideological opposition underpinning the issue.

Maybe the economy surging into the all-dominant concern, where for long it had been Iraq that was the top concern, has also helped to give more "breathing space" for breaking rank, expressing disappointment or even indignation with your own leader, etc.?
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  1  
Reply Fri 3 Oct, 2008 07:47 am
Quote:
Overall, the president’s approval rating has dropped five points from last week and is now the lowest of his presidency. Only 22 percent of Americans approve of the job he’s doing, while 70 percent of Americans disapprove - a new high.

President Bush’s job approval rating has dropped 68 points from its all time high of 90 percent back in October, 2001. It now matches Harry Truman’s previous all-time low, recorded by Gallup in February 1952. The 70 percent disapproval rating is higher than any measured since Gallup began asking about presidential job approval in 1938.
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2008/10/01/opinion/polls/main4492043.shtml

As I suggested rather a long while ago, there seems to be some truth about humans in community where something like one in five will be so deeply invested in prior ideas/allegiances that almost nothing will be sufficient to alter their opinion in matters such as this. As we watch the polling figures decline, we see that there's something quite inertial going on here...drops from 60 to 40 can occur relatively rapidly but drops from 25 to 20 take an atom bomb exploded above. Given everything that has happened over the last eight years, and particularly over the last two months, one wonders what it might take for that 20 or so percent to relinquish the fond allegiance.
JPB
 
  1  
Reply Fri 3 Oct, 2008 08:09 am
@blatham,
Quote:
"Part of the problem for us in the last three weeks has been a president on TV almost every day who had been MIA for the past six months," said a senior McCain aide, speaking anonymously to discuss the unpopular president in frank terms.

"If you're talking about the political benefit of getting a deal, well hopefully you'll see less of the president."

The economic woes and reemergence of Bush have combined to remind voters exactly why it is they are in such a sour mood, Republicans believe.

Recalling internal polling data from this week, one top GOP official shared, with a dose of incredulity, the "right track" figure.

"Ten!" exclaimed this official about the percent of Americans who believe the country is heading in the right direction, "Ten!" http://news.yahoo.com/s/politico/20081003/pl_politico/14236


It says something that McCain's handlers are concerned that G has been in the spotlight this week.

0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  1  
Reply Fri 3 Oct, 2008 09:14 am
JPB

Yes, pretty much the entire movement (and most acutely, the McCain campaign) are trying to dig a moat the size of neptune's orbit between themselves and Bush.

I've thought too, regarding that 10% result you note and others similar to it, that such stats can much more easily go lower (than that 20% I'm theorizing about) because it/they are at a conceptual remove from the object of allegiance. For example; "Sure the house is falling apart and the car doesn't work but don't you dare say anything bad about Daddy!"

Thus, things can go to **** but there's a deep and profound reluctance to disassociate with key identifiers of the held allegiance...party, movement 'truisms', persons. church, etc.
0 Replies
 
 

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