January 26, 2009

A Look at Presidential Approval Ratings

Gallop announced that President B.HO has started his term with a 68% approval rating. That sounds pretty impressive, but how does it stack up with previous presidents in their first term.
(If anyone can tell me how to paste an Excel doc. into Blogger pls let me know)

Going back to JFK we find the following bounce ie. the difference between the presidential popular vote and the approval rating at inauguration at the beggining of the first term.

Presidential Bounce
Johnson +13
Nixon +17
Carter +21
Reagan +4
Bush I +8
Clinton +20
Bush II +7
Obama +15

Bounce Mean:
All Presidents +14
Democrats +18
Republican +9

All presidents gain some support as Americans typically rally around the new president. Despite reports of republican partisanship it is obvious that Republicans are more apt to wish the new president well by a 9 point spread. President Obama has a bounce only 1 point higher than the average of all presidents and 6 points lower than Carter that took over a similar political climate.

Bounce Median:
All Presidents +15
Democrats +20
Republicans +7.5

The more interesting figure however is that out of these nine presidents Obama falls right in the middle of presidential bounce despite reports of the messiahs overwhelming support. In fact rates in the lower half of the five democratic democratic presidents edging out Johnson for last place by 2 points. Johnson had Vietnam but what is it that prevented the hyped one from reaching the level of Kennedy or even a Clinton?
If there is one certainty B.HO will have to act and acting will lead to the inevitable decline as his predecessors show here.

"How Presidents Stack Up" Graph courtesy the Wall Street Journal
Presidential Election results courtesy:

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