Wednesday, May 17, 2006

The Bush Presidency: Color It Blue

A new Survey USA study shows that the U.S. is going increasingly blue as the Bush presidency self destructs.

How deep are the president's troubles out there is in the reality-based community?
Bush has negative approval ratings in 47 states. Only sparsely populated Idaho, Utah and Wyoming are red. (You know, the states where there are more guns than people.)
It gets worse.
In 17 states, Bush's disapproval rating is double his approval rating.

In 15 states, Bush's disapproval rating is lower than any disapproval rating ever achieved by President Nixon nationally.
Does any of this really matter?

Nope. We're going to have to live with the sorry bastard for another 18 months.


Americans now trust Democrats more than Republicans by a wide margin, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

But the real money grafs in the Post's story are these:

The poll offers two cautions for the Democrats, however. One is a growing disaffection with incumbents generally. When asked whether they were inclined to reelect their current representative to Congress or look around for someone new, 55 percent said they were open to someone else, the highest since just before Republicans captured control of Congress in 1994. That suggests that some Democratic incumbents could feel the voters' wrath, although as the party in power Republicans have more at risk.

The second warning for Democrats is that their improved prospects for November appear driven primarily by dissatisfaction with Republicans rather than by positive impressions of their own party. Congressional Democrats are rating only slightly more favorably than congressional Republicans, and 52 percent of those surveyed said the Democrats have not offered a sharp contrast to Bush and the Republicans.

Those wiley Republicans are warning that if Democrats take control of Congress it will mean endless investigations of the president.

Zachary Roth, a Washington Monthly editor, takes a look at the tactic and the whole issue of investigating the prez here.


Pennsylvania may well be a bellweather for the November elections considered the results of Tuesday's primary elections. The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that:

Voters booted the top two Republicans in the state Senate from office yesterday in a startling display of anti-incumbent anger over the summer's legislative pay raise.

Senate President Pro Tempore Robert C. Jubelirer (R., Blair) and Majority Leader David J. Brightbill (R., Lebanon) - who together have served 56 years in the Senate - were defeated in two of the most costly legislative races in history. . . .

At least a dozen other incumbents appeared headed toward defeat in what would mark the largest legislative turnover in a primary in more than 30 years.

One of those incumbents is from Chester County in the far Philadelphia suburbs, which until Tuesday had not elected a Democratic state senator in memory and last voted for a Democrat for president in 1964. More here.

Jubelirer and Brightbill had set up themselves and their colleagues for defeat by passing a bill giving state legislators -- as big a bunch of do-nothing bozos as I've ever seen -- hefty pay raises and then only rescinding them after an extraordinary public backlash.

Guess the losers will just have to become lobbyists.

The Wall Street Journal reports that despite federal investigations and promises to mend their ways, the Republican-controlled House continues to draft spending bills setting aside billions of dollars for home-state projects without disclosing the sponsor:
The continued appetite for earmarks in an election year reflects pressure from rank-and-file lawmakers in both parties. The practices vary from one bill to the next, but Democrats often get about 30% to 40% of the total dollars, and both sides work with their respective party leaders to steer projects to politically vulnerable members.

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