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Bush's Popularity Reaches New Low

Old 11-04-05, 10:08 PM
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Bush's Popularity Reaches New Low

Bush's Popularity Reaches New Low
58 Percent in Poll Question His Integrity

By Richard Morin and Dan Balz
Washington Post Staff Writers
Friday, November 4, 2005; A01


For the first time in his presidency a majority of Americans question the integrity of President Bush, and growing doubts about his leadership have left him with record negative ratings on the economy, Iraq and even the war on terrorism, a new Washington Post-ABC News poll shows.

On almost every key measure of presidential character and performance, the survey found that Bush has never been less popular with the American people. Currently 39 percent approve of the job he is doing as president, while 60 percent disapprove of his performance in office -- the highest level of disapproval ever recorded for Bush in Post-ABC polls.


Virtually the only possible bright spot for Bush in the survey was generally favorable, if not quite enthusiastic, early reaction to his latest Supreme Court nominee, Samuel A. Alito Jr. Half of Americans say Alito should be confirmed by the Senate, and less than a third view him as too conservative, the poll found.

Overall, the survey underscores how several pillars of Bush's presidency have begun to crumble under the combined weight of events and White House mistakes. Bush's approval ratings have been in decline for months, but on issues of personal trust, honesty and values, Bush has suffered some of his most notable declines. Moreover, Bush has always retained majority support on his handling of the U.S. campaign against terrorism -- until now, when 51 percent have registered disapproval.

The CIA leak case has apparently contributed to a withering decline in how Americans view Bush personally. The survey found that 40 percent now view him as honest and trustworthy -- a 13 percentage point drop in the past 18 months. Nearly 6 in 10 -- 58 percent -- said they have doubts about Bush's honesty, the first time in his presidency that more than half the country has questioned his personal integrity.

The indictment Friday of I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Vice President Cheney's former chief of staff, in the CIA leak case added to the burden of an administration already reeling from a failed Supreme Court nomination, public dissatisfaction with the economy and continued bloodshed in Iraq. According to the survey, 52 percent say the charges against Libby signal the presence of deeper ethical wrongdoing in the administration. Half believe White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove, the president's top political hand, also did something wrong in the case -- about 6 in 10 say Rove should resign.

Beyond the leak case, Americans give the administration low scores on ethics, according to the survey, with 67 percent rating the administration negatively on handling ethical matters, while just 32 percent give the administration positive marks. Four in 10 -- 43 percent -- say the level of ethics and honesty in the federal government has fallen during Bush's presidency, while 17 percent say it has risen.

Faced with its cascade of recent setbacks, the White House is hoping the latest court nomination can rally disaffected conservatives and score the president a victory akin to the one he enjoyed in the nomination of Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. Alito begins the confirmation process with the support of 49 percent of the public, while 29 percent say he should not be confirmed, the poll found. One in 5 Americans -- 22 percent -- did not yet know enough about him to make a judgment.

The dissatisfaction with Bush flows in part out of broad concerns about the overall direction of the country. Nearly 7 in 10 -- 68 percent -- believe the country is seriously off course, while only 30 percent are optimistic, the lowest level in more than nine years. Only 3 in 10 express high levels of confidence in Bush, while half say they have little or no confidence in this administration.

Just 35 percent of those surveyed rated the economy as either excellent or good, with 65 percent describing it as not so good or poor. Although the government reported last week that gross domestic product rose 3.8 percent in the last quarter, despite the effects of Hurricane Katrina, 29 percent of those surveyed said they regard the economy as poor, the highest recorded during Bush's presidency.

Attitudes toward Bush are sharply polarized by party, as they have been throughout his presidency. Almost 8 in 10 -- 78 percent -- of Republicans support the president, while just 11 percent of Democrats rate him positively. Republicans long have been the key to Bush's overall strength, but Bush has suffered some defections since the beginning of the year, when 91 percent approved of the way he was handling his job.

Among independents, Bush's approval has plummeted since the beginning of the year. In the latest poll, 33 percent of independents approved of his performance, while 66 percent disapproved. In January, independents were evenly divided, with 49 percent approving and an equal percentage disapproving.

The intensity of Bush's support has changed since his reelection a year ago, with opponents deepening their hostility toward the administration. In the latest survey, 47 percent said they strongly disapprove of the way he was performing in office, compared with 35 percent who expressed strong disapproval in January. At the same time, the percentage who say they strongly approve of his performance has fallen from 33 percent last January to 20 percent today.

Iraq remains a significant drag on Bush's presidency, with dissatisfaction over the situation there continuing to grow and with suspicion rising over whether administration officials misled the country in the run-up to the invasion more than two years ago.

Nearly two-thirds disapprove of the way Bush is handling the situation there, while barely a third approve, a new low. Six in 10 now believe the United States was wrong to invade Iraq, a seven-point increase in just over two months, with almost half the country saying they strongly believe it was wrong.

About 3 in 4 -- 73 percent -- say there have been an unacceptable level of casualties in Iraq. More than half -- 52 percent -- say the war with Iraq has not contributed to the long-term security of the United States.

The same percentage -- 52 percent -- says the United States should keep its military forces in Iraq until civil order is restored, and only about 1 in 5 -- 18 percent -- say the United States should withdraw its forces immediately. In the week after U.S. deaths in Iraq passed the 2,000 mark, a majority of those surveyed -- 55 percent -- said the United States is not making significant progress toward stabilizing the country.

The war has taken a toll on the administration's credibility: A clear majority -- 55 percent -- now says the administration deliberately misled the country in making its case for war with Iraq -- a conflict that an even larger majority say is not worth the cost.

The president's handling of terrorism was widely regarded among strategists as the key to his winning a second term last year. But questions about Bush's effectiveness on other fronts have also depreciated this asset. His 48 percent approval now compares with 61 percent approval on this issue at the time of his second inauguration, down from a 2004 high of 66 percent.

Bush also set new lows in the latest Post-ABC News poll for his management of the economy, where disapproval topped 60 percent for the first time in his presidency. And 6 in 10 are critical of the way Bush is dealing with health care -- a double-digit increase since March. On gasoline prices, Bush's numbers have increased slightly over the past two months but still remain highly negative, with just 26 percent rating him positively.

The survey suggests a rapidly widening gulf between Bush and the American people. Two in 3 say Bush does not understand the problems of people like them, a 10 percentage point increase since January.

Nearly 6 in 10 -- 58 percent -- doubt Bush shares their values, while 40 percent say he does, another new low for this president. For the first time since he took office, fewer than half -- 47 percent -- said Bush is a strong leader, and Americans divided equally over whether Bush can be trusted in a crisis.

Told of the poll results, Republican National Committee Chairman Ken Mehlman said Bush will rally support through such issues as education reform, changes to the tax code, and a new energy strategy to show the public that he "will continue to push for changes in our government to serve the American people."

A total of 1,202 randomly selected adults were interviewed Oct. 30-Nov. 2 for this survey. Margin of sampling error for the overall results is plus or minus three percentage points.
The man who claimed to be "bringing back honor and integrity" to the Whitehouse apparently has little of either, according to the American people. What he did bring about are sitting officials being indicted for felonies and record earnings for the oil companies. And we have 3 more years of this guy?
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Old 11-04-05, 10:13 PM
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It is the traditional mid term slump. The silver lining in the cloud is that the Dems offer no alternative.
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Old 11-04-05, 11:36 PM
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Don't mean a thing so long as his agenda gets through

tort reform anyone?
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Old 11-04-05, 11:39 PM
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Of course you know a post-Fox News poll is going to have nothing but kudos.
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Old 11-04-05, 11:42 PM
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I only trust Rasmussen.
http://www.rasmussenreports.com/Bush_Job_Approval.htm
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Old 11-05-05, 12:10 AM
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It's the economy, Stupid. Or at least that is what keeps a president popular. Economy isn't bad, but utility costs will cause a pinch. And the man spends like a Democrat. I won't be too sorry to see him go. I don't buy the integrity angle much. Even if I disagreed with him on everything, I believe he is doing what he thinks to be correct.
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Old 11-05-05, 12:17 AM
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Does this mean you like him even less now, CRM?
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Old 11-05-05, 12:30 AM
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Originally Posted by CRM114
The man who claimed to be "bringing back honor and integrity" to the Whitehouse apparently has little of either, according to the American people. What he did bring about are sitting officials being indicted for felonies and record earnings for the oil companies. And we have 3 more years of this guy?
This is simply ludicrous.

1. It is OFFICIAL - singular, plural, that Bush has "brought" in the form of somebody in his administration being indicted. Clinton had that record well beat. And the guy was indicted for basically the same thing the last President was NOT indicted for, but clearly did - he was not indicted for anything related to the "war" or for what the original Plame investigation was about.

2. You are honestly trying to tell us that "Bush brought us record earnings for the oil companies"??? Are you honestly going to sabatoge your credibility so savagely just to try and score political points with the monumentally ignorant? Is that worth such an embarassingly low and silly assertion?

As if Bush has anything to do with China and India's new economic demands for more oil supply? As if Bush has anything to do with the hurricanes? As if Bush has anything to do with the fact that the Democrats won't allow us to drill where we know more oil is, won't allow us to search for any new oil, and won't allow us to increase refining capacity on the oil we already have - all to please the far-left environmental lobby?

These things are somehow connected to President Bush? That we haven't built a single new refinery in this rapidly-growing country in thirty years? That China needs ten times the oil that it used to? That Katrina and Rita decreased our capacity by 28%?

This is the kind of political tripe that should disgust anybody who knows anything about the way the world works, left or right. A message that you know damn well is completely untrue, yet still choose to aim at the uninformed to score some kind of political victory.

3. These poll numbers are not unprecedented in the slightest. Every modern President has had poll numbers this bad - Clinton and Reagan both had periods where they were in the mid-thirties.

4. It's actually not a horrible number considering the year-long assault Bush has endured from the Democrats and their willing accomplices in the media.

A media that blew Katrina far out of proportion, getting nearly the entire story wrong, from the amount of casualties, to the "riots" and unrest that didn't really happen. A media that jumped all over FEMA and the Feds, which was partly deserved, though the biggest failures were clearly those of the state and local(Democrat) governments who failed to follow their own evacuation plan. They demonized FEMA for taking 72 hours to move in, even though that's exactly the amount of time FEMA is supposed to take before moving into a disaster area according to policy.

They got this entire story so wrong, just for the purpose of pinning it on Bush - and it worked.

Big question - the media had ALL their resources covering this Katrina story. Thousands of reporters, crew, cameras, etc. This event took place in our own country, and those involved spoke English. It was the most massively covered news event of this type in history...

And the media got it embarassingly wrong.

Why on earth, then, should we trust the media to cover Iraq correctly? With far less resources, in a war zone, and in a different language?

Yes, Bush's numbers are down. This has been a tough time in his Presidency. But he's still getting quite a bit done, regardless. The media onslaught will surely continue, but Bush isn't the first President to find himself at such a level of public opinion.
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Old 11-05-05, 12:33 AM
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Originally Posted by kvrdave
It's the economy, Stupid. Or at least that is what keeps a president popular. Economy isn't bad, but utility costs will cause a pinch. And the man spends like a Democrat. I won't be too sorry to see him go. I don't buy the integrity angle much. Even if I disagreed with him on everything, I believe he is doing what he thinks to be correct.
The economy is doing pretty spectacular. 5.0% Unemployment - Four Million jobs newly created, and growing at a 3.8% rate this past quarter, which is a very brisk rate even in a normal time - and that was DESPITE the effects of the hurricanes and high gas prices.

That's pretty incredible.

But you are right - those gas prices are making it harder for the average person to "feel" it, along with CRM and others somehow pinning the gas prices to Bush, which is the most dishonest and ludicrous accusation that can be made. But the pitch is working to their target audience - the uninformed.
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Old 11-05-05, 12:39 AM
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How is the Plame thing related to the war? I had a guy tell me today that the Libby indictment will "force Bush to admit he lied about the evidence to go to war" and some other stuff. It still seems in my memory that the Senate had most of the same information and went along with it. I don't buy the "Boo hoo, I was fooled" by the Senators. They can't possibly thing looking that ignorant and weak is somehow going to benefit them.

Anyway, I don't see it being that big of a deal.
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Old 11-05-05, 12:45 AM
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The Plame thing is considered "related to the war" by the ignorant because that's what the Democrats and their accomplices in the press keep saying - over and over and over.

I don't know how many times I've heard that this indictment is "about the war, and the runup to war", etc. through Mainstream media outlets. And it's a vicious lie - Patrick Fitzgerald himself categorically said that his indictment had absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with the war, or the runup to the war, either way. It's in no way related.

The media simply disregarded that statement because it doesn't fit their pre-determined "Bush lied" campaign.

As a former Journalist, and as an American, I find it completely disgusting.

Last edited by natesfortune; 11-05-05 at 10:41 AM.
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Old 11-05-05, 05:57 AM
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Originally Posted by CRM114
The man who claimed to be "bringing back honor and integrity" to the Whitehouse apparently has little of either, according to the American people. What he did bring about are sitting officials being indicted for felonies and record earnings for the oil companies. And we have 3 more years of this guy?

Yup,it appears that way.
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Old 11-05-05, 06:43 AM
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It really is immaterial what the facts are - it's the perception that counts.
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Old 11-05-05, 07:11 AM
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Originally Posted by natesfortune
This is simply ludicrous.
Keep telling yourself that. Keep telling yourself that its insignificant that George W. Bush had the only sitting Whitehouse official indicted since the administration of Ulysses S. Grant. (Everyone else resigned or was fired by the President.) Keep telling yourself that Karl Rove has been absent from the President's side since the indictments. Keep telling yourself that 5 felony indictments is no big deal.

Obviously, the American people disagree with you.

Keep telling yourself that a swing from $3.29 and gallon to $2.29 a gallon in a month is natural and the free market at work. Bush is not directly responsible but as classicman notes, its the perception. Its the perception people have that Bush never spoke out against the raping by the gas companies. But its fact that many of the administration were officers or on the board of large oil conglomerates.

It's statements like, "Brownie, you're doing a heckuva job!" that costs Bush in the integrity department. Its appointing someone obviously unqualified for the Supreme Court in Miers. The people see Bush stand up there and say how it was important to appoint someone outside the "judicial monastery" one week and then appoint someone the exact opposite the next. The man has little integrity.
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Old 11-05-05, 07:17 AM
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Bush Public Support at Lowest Level Yet

By WILL LESTER, Associated Press Writer
President Bush's public support has eroded to its lowest level yet, with the Iraq war dragging on, a top White House aide facing felony charges and the White House rushing to replace a failed Supreme Court nominee.

Concerned that the president has lost his footing, some Republicans have suggested Bush should shake up his staff.

A new AP-Ipsos poll found the president's approval rating was at 37 percent, compared with 39 percent a month ago. About 59 percent of those surveyed said they disapproved.

The intensity of disapproval is the strongest to date, with 42 percent now saying they "strongly disapprove" of how Bush is handling his job — twice as many as the 20 percent who said they "strongly approve."

"This is the poorest excuse for a president this country has ever had," said Max Hollinberger, a businessman from Stanwood, Wash., who leans Democratic. He cited "the economy, going to war in Iraq for no reason, the way we can get to the tsunami victims before Katrina victims — the whole business."

A year after his re-election, Bush's second term has been marred by rising U.S. casualties in Iraq, a failed attempt to restructure Social Security, Hurricane Katrina missteps, rising fuel costs and his forced withdrawal of the Supreme Court nomination of Harriet Miers.

In a case involving the public naming of a covert CIA operative married to an Iraq war critic, Vice President Dick Cheney's former aide, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, pleaded not guilty on Thursday in federal court to charges of obstruction of justice, perjury and lying to investigators. The case casts a continuing cloud over Cheney and keeps Bush's closest adviser, Karl Rove, in legal jeopardy.

Republicans are starting to worry about the 2006 elections and hope Bush can reverse his slide.

Several senior Republicans who are close to the White House and Rove say there has been a lot of talk inside and outside the White House about the need for him to leave, but they're picking up no indication from him or his associates that it's going to happen — at least anytime soon.

Neither Bush nor Rove has seemed to get the message, the Republicans say.

Democrats have kept up the attack. "The 2006 midterm elections will be our next opportunity to change the environment of corruption and incompetence in Washington," Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said Thursday in a fundraising letter to Democrats. Reid has called for Rove's resignation and a "thorough house cleaning" at the White House.

In the AP-Ipsos poll, nearly one in five Republicans disapproved of Bush's handling of his job, compared with nearly nine in 10 Democrats. Nearly seven in 10 independents disapproved.

Four in five Republicans still back the president.

"I think he's done a wonderful job," said Gloria Bloecher, a Republican from Sherman, Texas. "He's done wonderful things for the economy. He rescued people who needed help in Iraq — it was the Christian thing to do. I still trust his people and the people he picks for the Supreme Court."

The president has lost support from some key groups of constituents over the past year. He's dropped 16 points in his approval rating with men in that time, 18 points with people who have a high school education or less, 16 points among Southerners and 13 points among Republicans.

The poll was conducted by telephone Oct. 31-Nov. 2 among 1,006 adults nationwide. The margin on sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points.
_____________

No, I agree with the the 'head in the sand Repubs,' Bush aint' in trouble.
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Old 11-05-05, 07:36 AM
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Despite this gloomy picture, Bush does have a few things going for him.

The trend of the price of oil and gasoline is downward.

The economy is in relatively good shape.

If the price of natural gas would go down, that would be a rather big plus for him. It's always good to see the price people pay for energy to subside.

Finally - the Repubs may be able to convince the majority of the people that their tax package (that is coming) will benefit them. Americans are sometimes easily convinced.
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Old 11-05-05, 08:12 AM
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Maybe if he starts a war, he can bring sagging those numbers up. Oh wait.
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Old 11-05-05, 08:43 AM
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President Bush clearly has problems, none of which will affect him much, but might affect the 2006 and 2008 elections. Even if the president's approval rating was up around 75% it wouldn't matter much for him personally, since he's already a lame duck.
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Old 11-05-05, 09:33 AM
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Originally Posted by CRM114
Keep telling yourself that a swing from $3.29 and gallon to $2.29 a gallon in a month is natural and the free market at work. . . . . . But its fact that many of the administration were officers or on the board of large oil conglomerates.


Believe it or not, yes - higher gas prices ARE the work of a free market: gas stations have two choices: charge more at the pump to ensure they'll be able to buy the next tanker of gas, or keepo prices low and run out of gas when someone who raised prices buys it.

It's supply and demand, its a global thing - take some economics courses.

It's even been admitted by CNN - Cheney has NO connections to Halliburton, he's severed them all; reports and investigations with access to alot more info than you'll ever see have confirmed that Cheney severed his connections to Halliburton.
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Old 11-05-05, 09:35 AM
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Originally Posted by CRM114
Keep telling yourself that. Keep telling yourself that its insignificant that George W. Bush had the only sitting Whitehouse official indicted since the administration of Ulysses S. Grant. (Everyone else resigned or was fired by the President.) Keep telling yourself that Karl Rove has been absent from the President's side since the indictments. Keep telling yourself that 5 felony indictments is no big deal.

Obviously, the American people disagree with you.

Keep telling yourself that a swing from $3.29 and gallon to $2.29 a gallon in a month is natural and the free market at work. Bush is not directly responsible but as classicman notes, its the perception. Its the perception people have that Bush never spoke out against the raping by the gas companies. But its fact that many of the administration were officers or on the board of large oil conglomerates.

It's statements like, "Brownie, you're doing a heckuva job!" that costs Bush in the integrity department. Its appointing someone obviously unqualified for the Supreme Court in Miers. The people see Bush stand up there and say how it was important to appoint someone outside the "judicial monastery" one week and then appoint someone the exact opposite the next. The man has little integrity.

I agree that Bush has got some -SERIOUS- issues that he needs to deal with and frankly, mind you I'm a pretty conservative, I've had an assfull of him at this point in his Reign. But to be honest, much like "clinton haters" from the 90's, the <b>"bush haters"</b> will hate him no matter what.
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Old 11-05-05, 10:45 AM
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Originally Posted by classicman2
It really is immaterial what the facts are - it's the perception that counts.
For a politicians poll numbers, yes.

But any discussion about what's best for the country with regards to policy, or any discussion about the results of a politician's legacy, or any discussion about what should be done in a certain situation, must be based upon facts.

Spin is fine for politicians - but why should we all follow along? Aren't we interested in the truth on this forum? We may have disagreements as to what the truth is, but I'd like to think that most of us only post things that we sincerely believe are true here. We don't post spin just for spin's sake.

But saying that Bush has somehow given the oil companies record profits is so far beyond the truth that nobody here, in a place where we are pretty well-informed, could actually believe such a thing.

I don't believe CRM actually buys that, which is why it disappoints me that he would post it.
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Old 11-05-05, 10:56 AM
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Originally Posted by CRM114
Keep telling yourself that a swing from $3.29 and gallon to $2.29 a gallon in a month is natural and the free market at work. Bush is not directly responsible but as classicman notes, its the perception. Its the perception people have that Bush never spoke out against the raping by the gas companies. But its fact that many of the administration were officers or on the board of large oil conglomerates.
This is just bizarre. You admit that Bush doesn't have anything to do with oil prices, and then castigate him for it anyway because the "perception" is that he does - thanks to people like you posting that kind of tripe even when you know it isn't true.

Doesn't truth mean anything to you? "Bush sucks because he's made oil prices high!" "You know that isn't true". "Yeah, but the PEOPLE think it is! So Bush sux!"

Ridiculous.

If we're going to discuss an issue, discussing the "perception" is worthless. Isn't our goal to get to the bottom of things? To figure out what works and what doesn't?

We are not talking heads on TV going to bat for our parties. We don't need to spew things like this when we know damn well they aren't true.

And yes, it is absolutely the free market that has caused oil prices to go down. Capacity has steadily gone back up since the hurricanes as infrastructure is repaired. And the market itself is slowing down on its rampant speculation for oil, and some selling has taken place, driving the price of a barrel of oil lower.

The oil companies cannot control the price of a barrel of oil. That is set by the marketplace, through supply, demand and speculation from people in the market. If you go out and buy 100,000 barrels of oil on Monday, you'll personally drive up the price a tiny bit by adding to demand. It's that simple.

It's statements like, "Brownie, you're doing a heckuva job!" that costs Bush in the integrity department. Its appointing someone obviously unqualified for the Supreme Court in Miers. The people see Bush stand up there and say how it was important to appoint someone outside the "judicial monastery" one week and then appoint someone the exact opposite the next. The man has little integrity.
I disagreed with the Miers appointment. But it was made because of the classlessness of the Democrat and their "list" of nominees that they would not fillibuster that they handed to the President. The Democrats are still trying to act like a majority party, even though they've lost election after election, and they've threatened UNPRECEDENTED action if they don't get their way. Harriet Miers was on the Senate Minority leaders list. Democrat Harry Reid's list had Harriet Miers on it.

Bush was simply trying to pick the "best" nominee for him available on the Dem's list - trying to play ball and accomodate so he could get a nominee through without a fillibuster - and you're giving him crap about it? Giving him crap for picking somebody that YOU GUYS suggested?

The only reason he pulled her was from the outcry from his own side finally forcing his hand. Now he's been forced to pick somebody "off that list" - a proven Conservative. He's calling the Democrats bluff now, and ironically is in a stronger position to get his nominee through BECAUSE of the Mier's nomination, which has galvanized his base.

None of this would've happened if the Dems weren't acting like little babies in threatening judicial fillibusters over ideaology - something the Republican never even considered with Clinton - because they have class.
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Old 11-05-05, 10:59 AM
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Originally Posted by wendersfan
President Bush clearly has problems, none of which will affect him much, but might affect the 2006 and 2008 elections. Even if the president's approval rating was up around 75% it wouldn't matter much for him personally, since he's already a lame duck.
It would matter a lot.

A good or bad approval rating provides a lot of political capital to get things done in Congress - "lame duck" or not.

If Bush had a 75% approval rating, he would have a much easier time getting his agenda through.
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Old 11-05-05, 12:00 PM
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2006 could be an indication of where 2008 is headed.
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Old 11-05-05, 12:09 PM
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Believe it or not, yes - higher gas prices ARE the work of a free market: gas stations have two choices: charge more at the pump to ensure they'll be able to buy the next tanker of gas, or keepo prices low and run out of gas when someone who raised prices buys it.
Do you really believe that shit?
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