Newsweek magazine has become a loony-left publication, with nearly every news story transparently designed to boost the Democrat cause. So I don’t know how much to trust their poll.
Still, the latest Newsweek poll data are pretty good for the Administration. President Bush’s approval rating is a healthy 57%, compared to 34% disapproval. The Democrats’ Iraq attacks seem to have had relatively little effect, as respondents say the U.S. did the right thing by invading Iraq by a surprisingly wide 68% to 28% margin. This suggests that the Democrats are barking up the wrong tree–as does the 60% to 36% margin by which respondents consider Bush to be trustworthy.
Ironically, President Bush gets the lowest ratings of his term for economic policy just as the economy is starting to take off. As we have often noted, public perceptions of the economy lag far beyond actual economic realities. It wouldn’t be surprising for the public to be a year behind the times; but still, the Democrats must be discouraged about their chances to keep voters in the dark until the fall of 2004. All in all, given the full court press the Democrats and the news media have applied for the last month, these results are reassuring for the Administration. Especially since President Bush has some good news banked for the future–Saddam will probably be captured or (more likely) killed; steady improvement in Iraq’s situation generally will eventually be noticed; a comprehensive report on Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction will be issued; and, barring a major terrorist attack, the economy will continue to improve.
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