April 06, 2004
Bush at 43%: Is Pew Right?
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The Pew Research Center for the People & the Press has released the results of their latest survey: Bush's popularity rating has (finally!) fallen to a new low of 43%, the lowest Bush has ever polled at. The bad news is that Pew has always been on the low side, and it is too early yet to tell if this is a blip or a new trend. One encouraging piece of corroborating evidence is that Zogby has had him at 46% and 47% over the past several weeks, though they have often been a low poll too. So I am watchfully hopeful.
The poll adds that public approval of Bush's handling of Iraq has fallen to 40%, which will probably only fall further as the death toll sadly and inevitably mounts. Support for Bush on the economy is down to 39%, and his energy policy gets only 29%, undoubtedly not helped greatly by high gas prices.
At the same time, low poll numbers could be a bit scary, for reasons that I have spoken of for a long time now: we know that Bush and Cheney have no problem with committing extreme acts for their political benefit, and the only thing that has ever brought Bush's poll numbers up were terrorist attacks, starting a war, and capturing an enemy--and if they can't (or haven't) capture(d) Osama bin Laden, then what will they do if things become desperate for them?
In the meantime, I will take these poll numbers as a good sign.