Zogby: Bush Got No Bounce from Iraq Speech
President Bush’s approval ratings remain unchanged after his address to the nation and the public remains as bitterly polarized as it was on election day.
No Bounce: Bush Job Approval Unchanged by War Speech; Question on Impeachment Shows Polarization of Nation; Americans Tired of Divisiveness in CongressÃ¢€”Want Bi-Partisan SolutionsÃ¢€”New Zogby Poll (Zogby)
President BushÃ¢€™s televised address to the nation produced no noticeable bounce in his approval numbers, with his job approval rating slipping a point from a week ago, to 43%, in the latest Zogby International poll. And, in a sign of continuing polarization, more than two-in-five voters (42%) say they would favor impeachment proceedings if it is found the President misled the nation about his reasons for going to war with Iraq.
The Zogby America survey of 905 likely voters, conducted from June 27 through 29, 2005, has a margin of error of +/-3.3 percentage points.
Just one week ago, President BushÃ¢€™s job approval stood at a previous low of 44%Ã¢€”but it has now slipped another point to 43%, despite a speech to the nation intended to build support for the Administration and the ongoing Iraq War effort. The Zogby America survey includes calls made both before and after the PresidentÃ¢€™s address, and the results show no discernible Ã¢€œbumpÃ¢€ in his job approval, with voter approval of his job performance at 45% in the final day of polling.
Where voters live has some impact on their perceptions. The PresidentÃ¢€™s job rating remains relatively strong in the South, with 51% rating his performance favorably; in all other regions, those disapproving his performance are in the majority.
In a more significant sign of the weakness of the PresidentÃ¢€™s numbers, more Ã¢€œRed StateÃ¢€ votersÃ¢€”that is, voters living in the states that cast their ballots for the Bush-Cheney ticket in 2004Ã¢€”now rate his job performance unfavorably, with 50% holding a negative impression of the PresidentÃ¢€™s handling of his duties, and 48% holding a favorable view. The President also gets negative marks from one-in-four (25%) RepublicansÃ¢€”as well as 86% of Democrats and 58% of independents. (Bush nets favorable marks from 75% of Republicans, 13% of Democrats and 40% of independents.)
While part of the president’s low ratings is clearly attributable to the daily news of casualties in Iraq, more stems from the polarized state of the electorate. Given that we appear stuck in permanent campaign mode, with both sides continuing to use over-the-top rhetoric about the other, this is not surprising. Since presidents no longer get a post-election “honeymoon” and the notion of working together for the good of the country, especially during wartime, during non-election years has become quaint, it’s no wonder that there is no healing.
The president’s numbers are low, Congress’ numbers are low, (I’m guessing the Supreme Court’s are too but that’s not captured in this poll) and people are just generally disgusted with the political system. Comparing this president’s poll numbers with those of previous presidents who lived in what appears a permanently bygone political climate and attributing them to the president himself makes little sense.