Polls Can Be Taxing
Opinion polls can be confusing. They can gauge a general feeling amongst the American people but when the questions become more specific, the numbers can get murky. Take for example the most recent CBS poll that shows Bush’s favorable rating at 33% (for those of you inclined to look at the numbers from the source you can find them here). This is believable if you take into account what we know of the Republican mindset, although to most of us it is unthinkable that 33 people, let alone 33 percent of the American population looks favorably on this man. But that is not the interesting part of the poll.
When asked about Dick Cheney, the American people (according to CBS) have a less favorable view than they do of President Bush (Cheney is at 19% favorable, Bush at 33% favorable), but his unfavorable view is better with Bush polling at 51% unfavorable and Cheney only at 44% unfavorable. This seems to be contradictory, but the numbers (supposedly) don’t lie and they tell us that many Americans simply do not know enough about our Vice President to have an appropriately negative view of him. Considering that Dick Cheney is the most powerful Vice President in history, this is not a good thing, especially when educating the public about our public figures falls mainly into the hands of the MSM. Clearly we on the left will have to find an easier way to bring this White House down that does not involve educating the public about Cheney, besides he’s doing fine putting his job in jeopardy all on his own.
With approval rating this low it is important for those of us who would like to see this administration implode to ask, where is the bottom of support for these men. Knowing my fellow Americans as I do, I have been inclined to believe that Bush’s support would not fall below 30%, but now that he is so close I am beginning to wonder and I may have figured out how to help them break through the basement floor.
For many Republicans, criminality is not necessarily a reason to withdraw support from a politician. Many of them understand skimming money is sometimes too hard to resist and most of them find political payback and hardball politics a sign of strength, in fact these are reasons to be proud of being a Republican. But there is one thing that is making them increasingly uncomfortable with Bush, that he is beginning to appear weak, and weakness they won’t tolerate.
The best way to get Bush’s core of support to drop him like a hot potato is to make him the butt of the joke. Not the joke that he has been, most Republicans are completely comfortable with a leader they do not find intellectually superior to themselves, that is why the idiot jokes have not eroded his support so far. The real political hit will come if we make fun of him for the weak, ineffectual monkey boy that he is. I don’t think the images of poor, black people in New Orleans drowning in their homes was what made some of his supporters peel away, but rather it was the image of him as a weak leader that could not command his troops in a crisis. The fact that he didn’t know how to hold a hammer properly on the Today Show did not help his image either. There were plenty of good old boys who jumped off the bandwagon after that sad display.
“Dumb” won’t play, but “weak” will work like a charm. Most of his support in the last election came from a fearful electorate who wanted a strong leader, someone who was not afraid to take on the terrorists and who would kick ass on America’s behalf. Well, we’re getting our ass kicked in Iraq and the terrorists are getting stronger and more organized. Bush is weak and he is getting scared. The more images and words and jokes we put out there exposing this weakness, the lower his poll numbers will go. Let’s shoot for 1% approval rating for Bush, then it won’t matter what anyone knows or doesn’t know about Dick Cheney. Now that would be something to see.