Where is Obama’s freefall of yesteryear?

Before I get to today’s news on Obama’s approval rating, take a look at this VFR entry from last August 12, especially the last three sentences, which I’ve bolded:

Exciting news at Powerline!

I hardly look at Powerline any more, maybe once every six months, but I was curious to see their reactions to the performance in the debate last night of their former governor Tim Paw-the-lady whom they used to favor for the presidency, so I headed over there. And what was the first item I saw? John Hinderaker, that cutting edge analyst, announces the breathtaking news that Obama is steadily heading downward in the polls. Wow! His approval rating is—guess, guess—it’s now at 43 percent!!!

In fact that’s exactly where it’s been, uh, repeatedly, over a period of a year, yet each time it gets there the Republicans eagerly declare that Obama is touching unprecedented lows, he’s plunging, he’s finished. For Hinderaker and so many other Republican mediocrities, no matter how many times Obama’s approval hits 43, or 44, or 42, it’s significant and exciting news.

The entire political world is obsessed at the moment by how horribly Obama is doing. In a reverse fairy tale, the golden prince has become a frog loathed by both parties. I don’t deny that his dealing with the finance crisis, and his repeated speeches to the nation, which seem to come every two days, show a man not up to the job. Yet at the same time I also think the all-consuming focus on his inadequacies, his lies, his extreme partisanship, and all the other negative things about him (or, from the Democratic side, his supposed yielding to the right-wing crazies in the House), is a waste of time. It’s entirely possible that in a year the economy will have improved, Obama’s approval rating will be higher, and the conventional wisdom, entirely forgetful of the obsessions of the summer of 2011, will be that he is heading toward re-election. I hope profoundly that he is not re-elected. But the Republican self-delusory hysteria on the subject of Obama’s forever-plummeting approval rating does not bode well for their side.

I said that last August. And what’s today’s news? Rasmussen Reports, the most respected polling organization, puts the president’s approval rating at 49 percent.

Also, as Gene Schwimmer at American Thinker points out, since Rasmussen’s presidential approval rating is based on a three day average, assuming all three days were not 49 percent, then on at least one of those days the president was at 50 percent or higher.

So Obama is entirely within reach of re-election, at least based on overall popularity as distinct from the electoral map. There was nothing determinative about his “plummeting” and doom-ridden approval ratings in the low forties or even high thirties, which the entire Republican universe treated as the final word on the subject.

It didn’t take any particular prescience on my part to see this point. It’s common sense that nothing remains the same, that things change. But (and here’s one thing that doesn’t change) ideology or partisanship forever pushes people into imagining that the way things are at this moment, is the way they will remain.

- end of initial entry -

Jim C. writes:

Larry, you just don’t get it. When Obama runs against Romney his so-called debating prowess, incompetence, and crappy record will be fully exposed, not to mention all his sleazy associations, Why don’t you understand this?

LA replies:

Don’t argue in such a low level way, acting as though only your view is correct and anyone who doesn’t agree with you “doesn’t get it.” It hasn’t occurred to you that reasonable people may not agree that Obama is going to be sunk by a mere debate—and particularly a debate with Romney, who is so accommodating and vacillating? The overemphasis that many conservatives put on the debate shows how desperate and unclear in their thinking they are.

Jim C. replies:

With all due respect …

It won’t be just the debate. Romney’s strategy, it’s my guess, will be to paint Obama as an out-of-touch ignorant incompetent—and it will stick.

LA replies:

Well, that would be nice, but it’s only one of several possible things that may happen in the debate, not all of them so rosy. Your certainty that YOUR scenario is the one that absolutely will happen is the mark of overheated partisanship.

Jim C. writes:

I don’t think so. Obama is a dead man walking.

LA replies:

It’s your very certainty that makes me doubt you.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at December 23, 2011 10:22 AM | Send

Email entry

Email this entry to:

Your email address:

Message (optional):