President Obama appears to have this weird problem. The more he talks, the more his poll numbers go down.
This is a very bad thing for a politician. It’s a little like an auto mechanic who breaks cars. Actually, I’ve had that. But still.
Obama made sure to raise his profile as the debt ceiling struggle neared its conclusion, and then some more afterward, when he set about branding Republicans as obstructionist dirtbags. And guess what? His approval rating is lower than it’s ever been, at 39 percent, according to Gallup.
We saw a similar problem with the Obamacare bill. Remember when he appeared on all five Sunday talk shows in September 2009 to promote the legislation? It was part of an Obamablitz the White House was staging to get the measure passed.
Guess what. They reeled him right back in. All his town hall meetings and TV appearances were making things worse. And better anyway to find out what’s in the bill after passing it, as then-Speaker Pelosi suggested.
Obama’s 39 percent approval rating – matched with a stunning 54 percent disapproval rating – is also bad news when you compare it to the three previous presidents who managed to get themselves reelected.
Ronald Reagan at this point in his presidency, with the country coming out of a recession, was at 44 percent approval. Bill Clinton was at 46 percent, and George W. Bush was at 60 percent.
Uhh, and 39 percent is only 15 points higher than Richard Nixon’s was the day he resigned. Just saying.
Clinton and Reagan both came back to win handily. But they each had two things going for them that Obama appears to lack: an economy that would look good on Election Day, and an ability to connect with voters.
In a play for 38 percent, Obama embarks today on a three day bus tour, complete with town hall meetings. Then, in a move apparently planned by his campaign team to help him out, he sets out for a ten day vacation.
Watch his numbers start to improve.