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March 06, 2006

FoxNews Poll: Bush At Lowest Approval Rate Plus Even More Bad News

Bush below 40% for the first time -- at 39%. Plus, a sizable majority want the Democrats to win the House this year, and most Americans are against the Dubai Port deal.

Which has hurt him with Republicans:

This is also one of only a handful of times that Bush’s approval has dropped below 80 percent among Republicans. Today 77 percent of Republicans approve, down from 82 percent in early February. Disapproval among Democrats went from 79 percent in early February to 84 percent today. Approval among independents is essentially unchanged at 35 percent.

There is a very disconcerting vibe I get from this Administration, quite often. I feel sometimes that they don't feel like they have make a vigorous and thorough case for their decision-making, because they believe, incorrectly, that no one's paying attention anyhow.

They don't set the agenda, often. They are just always reacting from one (usually self-made) crisis to the next.

Inversion: Some pundits -- Jonah Goldberg for one, I think -- have argued that the liberal media often hurts Democrats. The theory is that Democrats always think they have the media protecting them, so they are free, or at least free-r, to do what they want to do without suffering too much from public opinin.

And, while this is true most of the time, sometimes Democrats are snakebit-surprised when what they had assumed would not be an issue at all, or an issue embargoed/buried by the MSM, suddenly gets a lot of play and leaves them scrambling to explain themselves.

The theory goes that Republicans are less prey to this effect because they assume they media is always against them, so their are fewer ugly surprises. They know everything they do will be played in the most negatively light possible, so they have their rhetorical ducks in order and have anticipated each coming media hit.

Bush, however, seems to be the refutation of this theory. He seems to behave like liberal Democrats do -- always assuming he'll be insulated from controversy by an accomodating media. Sorry, George, the conservative media is still very much an alternative and relatively minor media. And then he's always surprised when there's a blow-up or media firestorm, unsure about how to respond forcefully, because he's still trying to figure out what went wrong.

I don't get it. There's a certain amount of "reign don't rule" insouciance to the Bush Administration that is rapidly running out of charm.

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posted by Ace at 02:19 PM

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