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July 24, 2009

Rasmussen: Obama Under 50% Approval for First Time; 53% Oppose ObamaCare

Something I didn't know that might explain why Rasmussen always has Obama 4-5 points below Gallup and others -- their tracking poll is of likely voters.

Just 25% believe that the economic stimulus package has helped the economy.

...

Overall, 49% of voters say they at least somewhat approve of the President's performance. Today marks the first time his overall approval rating has ever fallen below 50% among Likely Voters nationwide. Fifty-one percent (51%) disapprove.

...

California Senator Barbara Boxer is clinging to a four-point lead in her bid for re-election.

Fifty-three percent (53%) now oppose the Congressional health care reform package. Thatís up eight points over the past month. Just 20% now see health care as the most important of the Presidentís priorities. Nearly twice as many, 37%, say deficit reduction is most important.

I have written about my belief that 2008 was mostly about America voting no-confidence in the GOP due to perceived failures of competent management, and not really about ideology.

So while the public wanted to deliver a message to the GOP, they didn't necessarily want to deliver this message.

Megan McArdle makes a similar point, responding to Ezra Klein's odd assertion that Democrats in conservative districts should vote for health care, and their voters will reward them for doing what they don't want them to do.

But let me propose a couple of alternative scenarios. One is that basically center-right districts elect Democrats because the Republicans did things they didn't like: raising taxes, raising spending, getting into costly wars in the Middle East that don't go so well. When a national health care program passes, this reminds them that delivering a gigantic raspberry to the GOP has a price.

These are all just alternative ways to say "overreach," or, more specifically, "assuming a mandate for transformative socialist-leaning change when in fact you only had a mandate to manage the government better than the GOP was thought to do."

Independents are turning more and more from Obama. Critical, of course. While we conservatives frequently curse the fact that we need the independents, so too, of course, do the Democrats.

And: Rush Limbaugh on the media's Waterloo -- Barack Obama. The media army rushed to defend an indefensible hill, and they'll wind up losing big for that error.

Dick Morris Keeps Banging the Same Drum: Which is understandable, as it's a good drum. I've long agreed with his basic analysis.

Superficially, the United States appears to have a presidential system, but in fact it more and more resembles a parliamentary form of government. When a president loses the approval of the majority of the voters and polls reflect that his ratings have fallen substantially below 50 percent, he loses his power. In this context, polls are like parliamentary votes of no confidence in European systems. While the government does not fall if it loses in the polling, it limps on until either its ratings improve or it is voted out of office at the next election.

...

Now Obama faces the loss of power that comes with dropping poll numbers. The two early symptoms of this creeping impotence are his inability to pass the union card-check legislation or to force action on healthcare before the August recess, once highly touted administration goals.

As is usually the case, the apparent cause of these defeats -- the buildup of public disapproval of both bills -- is not what is really at work. Rather, it is the president's obvious inability to improve the economy that is exacting the daily toll in his approval ratings evident in all of the surveys. Like the body counts that mounted in Iraq and drove Bush's numbers ever downward, the rising unemployment numbers are stripping Obama of his popularity and power.

Obama's very activism in promoting the stimulus package in January as a cure-all has set him up for failure now that he cannot deliver on his overblown promises. Unlike Clinton's presidency, Obama's cannot be rescued by good public relations. His obvious failure to turn the economy around drags him down at every turn.

He says the elderly are turning against ObamaCare as they realize their free care is being largely taken away to provide free care for others. I don't think he has hard numbers for that; more just a sense of things. I hope he's right.



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posted by Ace at 12:40 PM

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