Thursday, September 21, 2006

Why He Should Resign

Cheers adnd Jeers: Thursday

Here's a nice historical context for why Bush is high on the list for "Worst. President. Ever."
"Even if all the hopeful, GOP-fed chatter about a bounce were to hold true, it would mean the president would likely end the year right where he started it; around 42 percent. There's not a single White House aid or Republican campaign consultant who in January would have been happy with the president treading water for the entire year. But that's exactly what he's done and the press, unburdened by any historical context, now treats that like an emerging success story.

Just look at the all the press attention paid to Tuesday's Gallup poll showing Bush climbing up to a 44-percent approval rating. In any other recent administration, that kind of rating would be cause for embarrassment. But the media rules are different for Bush. Also note that last week's Pew poll showing Bush stuck at 37 percent received very little coverage. That's because for the Beltway press corps, evidence that Bush-is-back means big news, while evidence that Bush-is-still-down does not.

The press' clear reluctance to tackle the topic simply feeds into the right-wing campaign under way that all presidents at one time or another suffer minuscule approval ratings, so Bush's downturn is no big deal. ...[B]ecause the press has consistently refused to treat Bush's 2006 poll collapse as dramatic or historic, [Rush] Limbaugh and others on the right are able to shrug it off as nothing 'unique.'

Here then, is some much-needed historical perspective to put Bush's standing in context:

>>> According to Gallup, on the eve of President John F. Kennedy's 1963 assassination, he was suffering the worst job-approval ratings of his presidency -- 58 percent.

>>> In 1968, when the war in Vietnam was claiming hundreds of U.S. casualties each week, President Lyndon Johnson was considered so unpopular that he didn't even run for re-election.Johnson's average Gallup approval rating for that year was 43 percent.

>>> When Reagan's second term was rocked by the Iran-Contra scandal, his ratings plummeted, all the way down to 43 percent.

>>> This year, according to the Gallup numbers, Bush has averaged an approval rating of 37 percent.

---Eric Boehlert (via Atrios) at Media Matters"


Post a Comment

<< Home