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Democrats take heart as Americans turn their back « Thread S

Daily newsbrief journal for May 2006, also see for a global 100-page perpetual brief and follow twitter @usdemocrats

Democrats take heart as Americans turn their back « Thread S

Postby admin » Fri Jan 27, 2012 8:27 am

Democrats take heart as Americans turn their back « Thread Started on May 19, 2006, 3:40am » --------------------------------------------------------------------------------Democrats take heart as Americans turn their back on Bush policies Ewen MacAskill in WashingtonThursday May 18, 2006The Guardian read source: ... htmlGeorge Bush speaks at the Republican National Committee presidential gala fundraiser. Photgraph: Evan Vucci/AP The Republicans could face a substantial electoral defeat later this year, leaving George Bush a lame-duck president, a poll published yesterday suggests. The poll, for the Washington Post and ABC television, confirmed a rapid slide in support for Mr Bush and raised hopes of a Democrat revival by putting the party ahead on all important indicators, from the economy to Iraq and immigration.Mr Bush is now just hovering above lows reached only by presidents Richard Nixon, Jimmy Carter, Harry Truman and his father. He has been unable to reverse the slump, despite a series of initiatives that included reshuffling his White House team last month, making a televised address to the nation on Monday night on Mexican immigration, and talking up progress on a new government for Iraq. Article continues----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------David Frum, who was responsible for writing Mr Bush's "axis of evil" speech, said yesterday: "It is not clear he has hit bottom yet. My view is that 2006 will not be a good year for Republicans."Frank Luntz, a Republican pollster and strategist, echoed Mr Frum, who is now a resident fellow at the rightwing Washington thinktank the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). "This is not going to be a good year for parties in power, not just in America. There is an anxiety in western democracies right now that has led voters to oust parties in power. There is unease and frustration with the status quo and a desire for change."The Democrats are hoping that in November's election they can regain control of the House of Representatives, lost after 40 years in a traumatic Republican landslide in 1994, and possibly gain the Senate. Control of either house would see a series of investigations launched that would add to pressure on Mr Bush in the last two years of his administration.Mr Luntz said: "It is absolutely possible for the Democrats to take one or both [houses]. I was involved in 1994. It feels like a 1994-style election. Voters will come to the ballots for candidates they do not even know [to get the incumbent out]." Mr Frum was less pessimistic: "It is not impossible that Republicans could eke out a hold in both houses."The Post/ABC poll, consistent with the trend in other polls during the past month, found that 69% of those surveyed thought the country was now off track and 56% would prefer to see Democrats in control of the US Congress. The Democrats recorded majorities over the Republicans on 10 crucial issues: health, education, the federal budget, petrol prices, taxes, phone-tapping and other privacy matters, the economy, Iraq, immigration, and the campaign against terrorism.Mr Bush's personal approval rating is only 33%, down five points in a month, with the decline sharpest among Republicans. Only 32% of those polled said they approved of the way he is handling Iraq. A toll of soldiers killed in Iraq is listed daily in US papers and on television. Karl Rove, Mr Bush's top election strategist, told an AEI meeting on Monday that Iraq was the issue that soured everything.But the issue that seems to be hurting the president most among Republicans is immigration. Mr Frum said that the unskilled, white working-class had not seen any rise in their wages since 2000 and blamed this partly on immigration.Thomas Mann, a senior fellow at the Washington-based Brookings Institution, said: "It has been an extraordinary collapse of support for the president and the Republican party. If you look at the poll ratings for the government on a range of issues, all of those are more damning than 94 was for the Democrats." He said people had lost trust in Mr Bush as a result of Iraq and Hurricane Katrina. He had given a reasonable speech on immigration,"but no one is listening any more".
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