Obama Bounces Back
At this midpoint of his first term, it is too early to say what President
First, a look back: What a difference two years makes. In his inaugural address, Obama said to "the cynics" who "question the scale of our ambitions" that "the ground has shifted beneath them." A year later, the ground has shifted beneath him, too.
His presidency was awash in a sea of troubles. Democrats suffered big off-year losses of a
Obama's approval ratings fell to about 50 percent from almost 70 percent of his first weeks in office and continued south during the past year to the mid-40s.
Now things are looking up. The economy and auto industry aren't completely out of the woods, but they're looking better. The health care bill finally passed and it remains unpopular, polls show, until people hear what's in it. Once they get past the paranoid right's blah-blah about creeping socialism and hear about the legislation's individual benefits, the public tends to like what they hear, especially now that families are beginning to receive some of those benefits.
Now Obama's polls are looking up, too. An
Judging by the gains he made among the crucial self-identified independent voters who, according to Gallup, approve of his performance by 46 percent, up from 41 percent during the lame-duck session and an all-time low of 38 percent in July, Obama's image as a pragmatist, unwed to any ideology, appears to be winning back the hearts of the middle-roader.
As for the economy, high-ranking Republicans are beginning to pay him a high compliment. They're trying to take credit for improvements in unemployment that took place before they regained control of the House.
It is? He might have gotten away with that self-serving assessment had the job growth not occurred in the month before Republicans took control of the House.
Same with Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl. The
"Some of the results ... I suspect, are coming from the fact that we extended tax rates that the president did not want to extend, but was willing to do so at the end of the year last year," he told
The president might as well take whatever credit is given for the uptick, since he most certainly will be receiving blame if things get worse.
So far, Obama appears to be taking good advantage of his party's election losses. Now, the pressure is on the Republicans to use their new control of the House to do more than just say "No."
Read the latest political news.
Available at Amazon.com:
- Obama and the Polls
- Obama Bounces Back
- The Loud Passing of the Old Order
- The Speech: Obama's State of the Union
- Obama Looks Good Halfway Through His Presidency
- Bipartisan Support for Making the Tax Code Simpler
- Obama's 'Freeze' Rehashes Failed 2010 Try
- The Spending Cuts Challenge
- Obama Should Challenge Country to Make a Clean Energy Automobile
- Obama's State of the Unions Less 'Intelligent' Than Bush's
- The Sorry State of Our Economic Union
- Looking Ahead and Back
- Obama Remembers JFK
- Reagan and Kennedy Are Role Models for Obama
- We Were Young For One, Brief Shining Moment
- Reagan Son Claims Dad Had Alzheimer's as President
- The Modern Military-Industrial Complex
- Why Sarah Palin Is Wrong About Michelle Obama's Weight Gain Fight
- After Repeal Vote, Healthcare Reform Fight Goes On
- GOP Attack on Health Care Shows Why Democrats Should Have Pushed Medicare for All
- Republicans Play Games with Health Care
- Giffords Shooting in Arizona Spurs Gun Law Debate
- Violent Rhetoric Can Lead to Tragedies Like Arizona Shooting
- Political Tone Had No Role in Arizona Shootings
- 10 States With the Largest Budget Shortfalls
- Contrasts in Black and Red
- The Bloomberg Syndrome
- The Enemies of Our Enemies are Our Friends
- Spiritual Death
- For (and Against) the Filibuster
- Who Needs Democracy?
- On Sargent Shriver
- Why are Republicans Doing This?
- Muslim 'Cosby' Show? Couldn't Hurt
- New Congress to Push Obama on Latin America
- Eisenhower's 'Military-Industrial Complex' and JFK's Inaugural
- Republicans Break Their Promises On Day One
- Speaker Boehner: Will He (Republican) Party Like It's 1995?
- Dysfunctional Duo's undoing
- The Tab Comes Due in 2011
- Incoming Republican Leadership Reeks of Corporate Control
- For the 112th Time: New Congress, Same Challenges
- Obama and Human Rights: Continuity and Change
- Despite Critics, Palin's Buzz Is Positive
- Moment of Silence Needs to Be Followed by More Than Just Lowered Voices
- Tests of a New Political Tone
- At Time of Healing, Sarah Palin Throws Gas on Flames
- The Liberal Empire Strikes Back
- The New Sophists
- Fishing for Democratic Corruption
- The Shameful Attack on Public Employees
- The Stealth Attack on American Education
- Obama Faces the Same Problems in 2011
- GOP's John Boehner Gets House Speaker's Gavel
- Good Teen Pals = Good Politics?
- Boehner, Pelosi, Haley, Ryan and Others to Watch in 2011
- New Era of Bipartisanship in 2011? No Chance
- Congress to Tackle Healthcare and Filibuster Rules
- Democrats Push for Filibuster Rule Change
- Republicans Charge Harry Reid Power Grab on Filibuster
- Lame Duck Session Was Successful For The President's Party
- Constitutionalists vs. 'Interpretationists'
- 2010 Midterm Elections Set Campaign Spending Records
- Biden Hints at Obama Reelection Themes
- Obama's Toughest Year Ahead?
- How Obama Is Failing at the Dramatic Side of the Presidency
- The Founding Fathers: Religion and God
- Ham-and-Egg Justice
- Obama's Hawaii Vacation Is Revealing
- Like Sarah Palin Early Feminists Were Pro-Life
- They're Back! The Return of the Death Panels
- Don't Reignite 'Death Panel' Insanity
- Sarah Palin: She Told Us So
- Why the Rich Are Getting Richer
- A Far From Happy New Year
- The American 21st Century
- Defense Is On The Table
- A Leaner and Meaner Defense
- The Political Power of Social Media
- The Good News About Gas
Obama Bounces Back | Politics
(c) 2011 CLARENCE PAGE DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.