George W. Bush

Bush's shrinkage and some history

It shrinks?George W. Bush's current job approval rating is somewhere in the range of 49% (Fox, for example, shows him at 48%). The buzz is that he'll go into his second inaugural with the lowest job approval of any two-term president in the 80 years of presidential polling.

Richard Nixon, just after his re-election in 1972, held the weight of a collapsing Vietnam fiasco along with early rumblings over something called "Watergate". His job approval numbers in this same late December period, however, were at a respectable 59% and didn't drop below 49% until April 1973 when Watergate broke for real.

In terms of "popular" two-termers, Ronald Reagan held a 59% approval rating in this period. President Clinton was even better in late December 1996 when CNN showed him at 64% and Gallup just one point lower than Reagan at 58%. Eisenhower bested them all with a 75%, then again Ike never once dipped below 51%.

Nixon eventually found himself with a 24% after America discovered what this guy was all about. It's a shame that American voters tend to see the light only after it's too late. Will the "too late" this time around be a pathetic (yet bloodless) cover-up like Watergate or a far more deadly trespass?