14 October 2005

The Worst President in History? New polling numbers

Bush and the Republicans, Badly Slumping in Polls

US President George W. Bush struggled in the face of worsening opinion polls, including one survey that for the first time found a plurality of Americans think he will be viewed as a failed leader. In a new study by the non-partisan Pew Research Center, 41 percent said that Bush would be an unsuccessful president whereas only 26 percent say he will be successful.

Bush's job approval rating slid to 38 percent, and showed the US public increasingly concerned about the war in Iraq.

Just days before Iraqi voters cast ballots on a constitution, 53 percent of respondents told Pew that the US effort there is not going well, while over half say the decision to go to war was wrong - up from 44 percent in September.

On Wednesday, a poll by NBC and The WSJ found that a plurality of Americans, 48 percent, said they would prefer the opposition Democrats to control Congress compared to 39 percent who want Bush's Republicans. The gap between the two parties was the largest ever recorded. The Republicans hold a majority in both houses of Congress and face mid-term elections in November 2006 amid growing public concern over the war in Iraq, the economy, and high gasoline prices.

The poll also showed Bush's overall approval ratings dropping to an all time low of 39 percent. Anxious about Bush's plunging poll numbers, Republicans in Congress have begun to break ranks and defied the White House on important issues.

The poll also revealed overwhelming opposition to Bush among blacks. Only two percent said they approved of his performance as president, the lowest level ever recorded for a sitting President.

Investigations and indictments of prominent Republican lawmakers also appear to pose a serious threat for Bush's party.

Sixty-five percent said charges against Representative Tom DeLay, who has temporarily stepped aside from his post as House of Representatives majority leader, suggested illegal activity.

A majority of 57 percent said an investigation into possible insider trading by the Republican majority leader in the Senate, Bill Frist, indicated wrongdoing.

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