Confidence in Obama reaches a new low

Ed Lasky
America is waking up from its dream. Dan Balz and Jon Cohen of the WaPo write:

Public confidence in President Obama has hit a new low, according to the latest Washington Post-ABC News poll. Four months before midterm elections that will define the second half of his term, nearly six in 10 voters say they lack faith in the president to make the right decisions for the country, and a clear majority once again disapproves of how he is dealing with the economy.

Regard for Obama is still higher than it is for members of Congress, but the gap has narrowed. About seven in 10 registered voters say they lack confidence in Democratic lawmakers and a similar proportion say so of Republican lawmakers.

Overall, more than a third of voters polled -- 36 percent -- say they have no confidence or only some confidence in the president, congressional Democrats and congressional Republicans. Among independents, this disillusionment is higher still. About two-thirds of all voters say they are dissatisfied with or angry about the way the federal government is working.

Such broad negative sentiments have spurred a potent anti-incumbent mood. Just 26 percent of registered voters say they are inclined to support their representative in the House this fall; 62 percent are inclined to look for someone new.

Democrats nationally remain on the defensive as they seek to retain both houses of Congress this fall. Registered voters are closely divided on the question of whether they will back Republicans or Democrats in House races. Among those who say they are sure to cast ballots in November, 49 percent side with the GOP and 45 percent with Democrats.

Overall, a slim majority of all voters say they would prefer Republican control of Congress so that the legislative branch would act as a check on the president's policies. Those most likely to vote in the midterms prefer the GOP over continued Democratic rule by a sizable margin of 56 percent to 41 percent.

There are a few interesting points behind the plummeting polls.

Independents -- that amorphous body that usually determines elections -- are continuing to migrate away from the Democratic Party. That party is increasingly identified by its leaders: Pelosi, Reid and Obama. They are to the left of many members of the party, but have dragged other party members who have done their bidding for them off the cliff, as well. Many more people identify themselves as conservatives than liberals.

What is particularly salient now is the inroads that the Tea Party has made in the ideology of Americans. One of the core beliefs of the Tea Party is that the Constitution is paramount -- as are the importance of  checks and balances in our federal system. That system has been rent asunder by Democratic control in Congress and the Executive branch and the ways and means the Democrats have used to run roughshod over our Founding Document.

I think the lawsuit against the new Arizona immigration law is only highlighting the fact that the politicians in Washington don't understand that the Constitution also lays out a system where states retain some sovereignty and freedom from federal control. I think the lawsuit, though it may gain some Hispanic support for Democrats, runs the risk of reversing the gains Democrats have made in the historically conservative Western states.

Another interesting point is that the poll's headline numbers don't reflect that fact that a big chunk of support for Obama still hails from African-Americans, who have remained solidly in his corner while support has melted away from other groups (including Hispanics). This support, as others have pointed out, will not help him in many Congressional districts where African-Americans do not have much electoral strength (partly due to districts carved out to ensure a majority-minority demographic -- and hence African-American and Democratic representatives). That does not bode well for Congressmen going into November. The Washington Post obliquely points this out:

The president's approval ratings reached a new low among whites, at 40 percent, with his positive marks dipping under 50 percent for the first time among white college-educated women.

The deficit is also a prime concern of Americans. Obama's worst ratings come on his handling of the deficit, where 56 percent disapprove and only 40 percent approve of his handling.

Again, Americans owe a debt of gratitude towards the Tea Party for highlighting the importance of this problem for the rest of America -- because we know Democrats would not -- and only conservative Republicans would (and they would be smothered by the media). After all, this administration is completely bereft of real world business knowledge. Obama is an academic who never lived in the real world and always subsisted by relying on the public purse.  Spending has been an easy way to build up electoral strength for politicians keeping their seats -- and they have just been kicking the can down the road for others (our children) to deal with in the future. Keep up the pressure -- spending our money for their elections was never a bargain that made much sense to me.

These numbers bode well for a change in control in Congress. The nation is in a foul mood when it comes to incumbents -- and since most of them are Democrats, they have a target on their backs. The post points out that confidence in Obama is at about the same level as it was for Bill Clinton before Republicans captured the House and Senate in an electoral landslide. Here comes the earthquake.

One other point that I will make.

Has anyone ever noticed that support for Obama and Democrats always seems to hover around the 45-55% level? I also noticed that about 50% of Americans have been removed from the income tax rolls (i.e., half of Americans don't pay income taxes). I am assuming that a large portion of those not paying taxes are the beneficiaries of those who do pay taxes. In any case, they don't concern themselves with taxes and the massive rise in taxes that will be one hell of a New Years Eve hangover. They don't concern themselves with having to pay for the hundreds of billions of debt that will be others' lot to pay off in the years ahead.

One author has highlighted a stark division in America.  There are the makers and the takers in our nation -- those who want to work and those who want to take. Is it merely a coincidence that the percentage of those who do not pay income taxes closely mirrors those who still support Democrats and Barack Obama?

Correlation is not causation, of course. We don't know if the takers support Democrats because it is in their pecuniary interest to do so -- but the numbers do prompt some speculation, no?

Do the Americans who still support Democrats do so because they support a redistribution of savings in America that has nothing to do with growth of the economy or individual merit but are a response to the demonizing of free enterprise that is Obama's wont and the promotion of the view that Other People's Money is really theirs?
Richard Baehr adds:

Survey USA (very highly rated pollster) has Carly Fiorina ahead for the first time: by 2 points, and Whitman ahead by 7. Last week's Field Poll had Boxer up by 3 and the governor's race tied. This is the odd race where Rasmussen (with a smaller sample) shows better numbers for Dems, but their numbers are a bit older.  

When long term incumbents cannot break out of the low to mid 40s, it is very bad for them. They have had (in Boxer's case 18 years) to sell themselves to the voters, in Brown's case, even longer.  Same for Harry Reid in Nevada.

The Dems can slime Sharron Angle (easy enough to do), but there is just no enthusiasm  for Reid other than among core Democratic groups who get the goodies directly from the Democrats in Congress and the White House. The WH seems to realize it has no hope of moving independents in 4 months, so the campaign will be targeted almost exclusively to motivate the base.

Non-Hispanic whites voted 55-43 for McCain over Obama. I expect the GOP to win the white vote with at least 60%, probably more, this time around, and their share of total vote will be a good bit higher than the 74% of the electorate it was in 2008, likely 77% or more.

California, Washington state, and Wisconsin Senate seats are all in play, meaning GOP has 11 solid targets for pickups. Of course, the GOP has to defend Kentucky, Ohio, Missouri, Florida, New Hampshire open seats.
America is waking up from its dream. Dan Balz and Jon Cohen of the WaPo write:

Public confidence in President Obama has hit a new low, according to the latest Washington Post-ABC News poll. Four months before midterm elections that will define the second half of his term, nearly six in 10 voters say they lack faith in the president to make the right decisions for the country, and a clear majority once again disapproves of how he is dealing with the economy.

Regard for Obama is still higher than it is for members of Congress, but the gap has narrowed. About seven in 10 registered voters say they lack confidence in Democratic lawmakers and a similar proportion say so of Republican lawmakers.

Overall, more than a third of voters polled -- 36 percent -- say they have no confidence or only some confidence in the president, congressional Democrats and congressional Republicans. Among independents, this disillusionment is higher still. About two-thirds of all voters say they are dissatisfied with or angry about the way the federal government is working.

Such broad negative sentiments have spurred a potent anti-incumbent mood. Just 26 percent of registered voters say they are inclined to support their representative in the House this fall; 62 percent are inclined to look for someone new.

Democrats nationally remain on the defensive as they seek to retain both houses of Congress this fall. Registered voters are closely divided on the question of whether they will back Republicans or Democrats in House races. Among those who say they are sure to cast ballots in November, 49 percent side with the GOP and 45 percent with Democrats.

Overall, a slim majority of all voters say they would prefer Republican control of Congress so that the legislative branch would act as a check on the president's policies. Those most likely to vote in the midterms prefer the GOP over continued Democratic rule by a sizable margin of 56 percent to 41 percent.

There are a few interesting points behind the plummeting polls.

Independents -- that amorphous body that usually determines elections -- are continuing to migrate away from the Democratic Party. That party is increasingly identified by its leaders: Pelosi, Reid and Obama. They are to the left of many members of the party, but have dragged other party members who have done their bidding for them off the cliff, as well. Many more people identify themselves as conservatives than liberals.

What is particularly salient now is the inroads that the Tea Party has made in the ideology of Americans. One of the core beliefs of the Tea Party is that the Constitution is paramount -- as are the importance of  checks and balances in our federal system. That system has been rent asunder by Democratic control in Congress and the Executive branch and the ways and means the Democrats have used to run roughshod over our Founding Document.

I think the lawsuit against the new Arizona immigration law is only highlighting the fact that the politicians in Washington don't understand that the Constitution also lays out a system where states retain some sovereignty and freedom from federal control. I think the lawsuit, though it may gain some Hispanic support for Democrats, runs the risk of reversing the gains Democrats have made in the historically conservative Western states.

Another interesting point is that the poll's headline numbers don't reflect that fact that a big chunk of support for Obama still hails from African-Americans, who have remained solidly in his corner while support has melted away from other groups (including Hispanics). This support, as others have pointed out, will not help him in many Congressional districts where African-Americans do not have much electoral strength (partly due to districts carved out to ensure a majority-minority demographic -- and hence African-American and Democratic representatives). That does not bode well for Congressmen going into November. The Washington Post obliquely points this out:

The president's approval ratings reached a new low among whites, at 40 percent, with his positive marks dipping under 50 percent for the first time among white college-educated women.

The deficit is also a prime concern of Americans. Obama's worst ratings come on his handling of the deficit, where 56 percent disapprove and only 40 percent approve of his handling.

Again, Americans owe a debt of gratitude towards the Tea Party for highlighting the importance of this problem for the rest of America -- because we know Democrats would not -- and only conservative Republicans would (and they would be smothered by the media). After all, this administration is completely bereft of real world business knowledge. Obama is an academic who never lived in the real world and always subsisted by relying on the public purse.  Spending has been an easy way to build up electoral strength for politicians keeping their seats -- and they have just been kicking the can down the road for others (our children) to deal with in the future. Keep up the pressure -- spending our money for their elections was never a bargain that made much sense to me.

These numbers bode well for a change in control in Congress. The nation is in a foul mood when it comes to incumbents -- and since most of them are Democrats, they have a target on their backs. The post points out that confidence in Obama is at about the same level as it was for Bill Clinton before Republicans captured the House and Senate in an electoral landslide. Here comes the earthquake.

One other point that I will make.

Has anyone ever noticed that support for Obama and Democrats always seems to hover around the 45-55% level? I also noticed that about 50% of Americans have been removed from the income tax rolls (i.e., half of Americans don't pay income taxes). I am assuming that a large portion of those not paying taxes are the beneficiaries of those who do pay taxes. In any case, they don't concern themselves with taxes and the massive rise in taxes that will be one hell of a New Years Eve hangover. They don't concern themselves with having to pay for the hundreds of billions of debt that will be others' lot to pay off in the years ahead.

One author has highlighted a stark division in America.  There are the makers and the takers in our nation -- those who want to work and those who want to take. Is it merely a coincidence that the percentage of those who do not pay income taxes closely mirrors those who still support Democrats and Barack Obama?

Correlation is not causation, of course. We don't know if the takers support Democrats because it is in their pecuniary interest to do so -- but the numbers do prompt some speculation, no?

Do the Americans who still support Democrats do so because they support a redistribution of savings in America that has nothing to do with growth of the economy or individual merit but are a response to the demonizing of free enterprise that is Obama's wont and the promotion of the view that Other People's Money is really theirs?
Richard Baehr adds:

Survey USA (very highly rated pollster) has Carly Fiorina ahead for the first time: by 2 points, and Whitman ahead by 7. Last week's Field Poll had Boxer up by 3 and the governor's race tied. This is the odd race where Rasmussen (with a smaller sample) shows better numbers for Dems, but their numbers are a bit older.  

When long term incumbents cannot break out of the low to mid 40s, it is very bad for them. They have had (in Boxer's case 18 years) to sell themselves to the voters, in Brown's case, even longer.  Same for Harry Reid in Nevada.

The Dems can slime Sharron Angle (easy enough to do), but there is just no enthusiasm  for Reid other than among core Democratic groups who get the goodies directly from the Democrats in Congress and the White House. The WH seems to realize it has no hope of moving independents in 4 months, so the campaign will be targeted almost exclusively to motivate the base.

Non-Hispanic whites voted 55-43 for McCain over Obama. I expect the GOP to win the white vote with at least 60%, probably more, this time around, and their share of total vote will be a good bit higher than the 74% of the electorate it was in 2008, likely 77% or more.

California, Washington state, and Wisconsin Senate seats are all in play, meaning GOP has 11 solid targets for pickups. Of course, the GOP has to defend Kentucky, Ohio, Missouri, Florida, New Hampshire open seats.