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Tag Archives: Inauguration 2013

Obama Approval Rating Remains Low

President Obama remains stuck with historically low approval ratings, a potentially severe handicap that could hamper his ability to pass his second term agenda.

Despite recent reports ballyhooing a rise in Obama’s approval numbers, which according to Gallup had  edged up to 58 percent in December, Obama is back to a bare majority, with only 52 percent giving him the thumbs up in both Gallup and Pew Center surveys.

The polling shows Obama essentially got no bounce from his Inauguration, with his approval rating having been at about 51 percent before giving a speech widely held to be a partisan recitation of liberal principles.

Fifty two percent is exactly where George W. Bush was at the start of his second term. But unlike Obama, Bush had won the presidency by a sliver and was embroiled in an unpopular war. Bush’s signature second term initiative, Social Security reform, was a dismal failure.

Bill Clinton, who had some significant legislative successes – particularly on the budget – in the first year of his second term, was at 60 percent approval post-Inauguration Day 1997. Clinton’s average approval rating for his second term was 61 percent.

Obama is well off the highs he recorded after his first Inauguration, when his approval was close to 70 percent. Still, Obama’s current level is an improvement over numbers that had been stuck around the mid-40s for much of 2012.

Yes, It Matters Whether Beyonce Sang the National Anthem

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney today sought to extinguish controversy over whether Beyonce lip-synched the national anthem at the Inauguration by going on the attack against reporters.

“What I know about this I know this I know, mostly know from what I’ve read and shockingly it has not all been consistent,” Carney said during today’s White House briefing.

Get a life, jerks.
Get a life, jerks.

“I’m glad you guys are focused on the important issues of the day here,” he said. “You know, as powerful as this office is, we don’t control the weather and as many issues as we deal with here, we still have to choose what we don’t deal with and this is one of those issues.”

My experience with the White House – any White House, but especially this one – is that when they start attacking reporters, that’s when they are really concerned about something.

I am sure the White House does not want President Obama’s glorious day to be mucked up by a cheap deception. And I don’t blame them.

Beyonce’s “performance” of the Star Spangled Banner was a stirring moment, a sublime, patriotic and powerfully delivered – at some point in time – coda to our nation’s most solemn and important national ritual.

Americans stood on the National Mall and at home with the hands resting on their hearts singing along, united for a moment in reverence for our nation and for a system of government that peacefully installs a leader every four years, and has for centuries.

If it turns out this moment was fraudulent, that what Americans were watching was a tape recording made by a vain star too preoccupied with other things to practice or too concerned with her image to allow for a possible mistake, then I think there are many who will be disappointed.

Our government obscures the truth too often. But in this case, Obama’s own remarks were a sincere statement of his liberal philosophy and a clear signal that he will govern from the Left.

That this may have been adulterated by mendacity should be of concern to him. And it’s an insult to all of us who proudly sang along.

Obama Government Equal to Population in 1776

President Obama Monday invoked Thomas Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence to justify his expansive view of government, but Jefferson might be surprised to learn that the number of federal employees today is nearly equal to the entire population of the nation in 1776.

According to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, the current civilian federal workforce, excluding postal service employees, was 2.15 million in 2011. The Census Bureau estimates that in 1776, the entire population of the United States was just a bit higher, at about 2.5 million. The number suggests that every adult man and woman living at the time – at least – would have been needed to staff today’s federal government.

The comparison is ironic because Obama invoked Jefferson’s famous line from the Declaration about “unalienable rights” such as “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” to launch an inaugural address that invoked the Founders as justification for Obama’s own statist agenda.

The Founders, who crafted a Constitution that is at bottom a document designed to limit the powers of federal government, would never have recognized the welfare state and redistributionist policies Obama supports. Jefferson in particular is viewed as a leading figure among them backing the cause of states rights and a limited federal role.

Obama suggested in his remarks that the federal government is instead the protector of such rights, a warped view of the Founders’ intentions.

In his first term as president, George Washington had only five Cabinet members and about 1,000 federal workers in his employ.

Under Obama, the civilian workforce has grown by nearly 200,000 from the level of 1.96 million in 2008.

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