Thursday, January 04, 2007

CBS Poll Says Bush's Approval at 30%

Four years ago, various Bush Administration figures said that Iraq would be a cakewalk. They assured us they had all the answers. We have since learned otherwise.

Bush still has no plan for Iraq. The recent elections are two months old and Bush is still dawdling and doing everything he can to ignore the report by the Iraq Study Group. In the meantime, Donald Rumsfeld is gone. John Bolton is gone. Now Harriet Meiers is gone. Two generals have been replaced. Negroponte is going over to work for Condi Rice.

Will playing musical chairs save George W. Bush? The only way Bush can save his presidency is to knock off the politcal games for which he is so famous and show a little humility and willingness not just to change but to do more than just talk or do the opposite of whatever sound advice he receives.

CBS reports that Bush's approval ratings now sit at 30% (hat tip to Talking Points Memo); here's more:
Americans are generally optimistic about the new Democratic-controlled Congress that convened on Thursday, according to a CBS News poll. ...

Sixty-eight percent of those polled said they had optimistic feelings about the 110th Congress, which will be led by Democrats for the first time in 12 years. Just 25 percent said they were pessimistic.

The poll goes on to say that only 20% of Americans think Bush has a plan for Iraq. I wish the question had been this, "Bush still talks about victory. Do you believe he has a plan for victory in Iraq?"

There will be no victory. Not in the sense of a viable, democratic Iraq as an ally of the US. That's gone. The only thing that can be accomplished is to minimize the damage to our country and our foreign policy as we begin to withdraw and force the Iraqis to come to terms with their future. It will take a year or so to draw down most of the troops but our troops will probably have to remain closeby for another two or three years. Some troops may have to remain in the Kurdish areas on standby; there may even be occassions when some troops have to come back and engage in military action in trouble spots for a week or more. We will probably have to continue to make the whole of Iraq a flyover zone to protect it from its neighbors. In fact, to end the flyover zone, will require serious negotiations on our part with Iraq and its neighbors.

Let me note one other thing about the CBS poll: only 23% of Americans approve of the way Bush is handling Iraq. So let's review:
Only 20% of Americans think Bush has a clear plan.
Only 23% of Americans approve of Bush's handling of Iraq.*
Only 30% of Americans approve of Bush's overall performance.

I think we're finally getting down to the hardcore right wing Republicans who support Bush; I suspect the number is around 23-25%. George W. Bush has no mandate in Iraq and clearly no mandate for a broader war in the Middle East. In January of 2007, that is where we are.

*I can only surmise that 3% of Americans don't think Bush has a plan in Iraq but believe he has the astonishing ability to—what?—wing it, muddle his way through, roll the dice double or nothing? I leave readers to conjecture.

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Anonymous S.W. Anderson said...

Maybe that 3 percent join Bush in believing that if he just keeps doing the same things, at some point he'll get a different result.

11:51 PM  
Blogger Craig said...

S.W., actually that seems to be the philosophy of most Republicans these days. I love it when a rational conservative like former Nixon aide, John Dean, comes along and simply says, "Uh, you know, that actually doesn't work."

5:37 PM  
Blogger MarchDancer said...

There's only one problem that no one ever seems to notice: Bush admits that he does not read anything, even newspapers. He has told us he has advisors who do that for him and then advise him. I've been willing to bet for a very long time that our illustrious leader has no idea at all of his (dis)approval numbers.

7:46 AM  

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