Debunking the Myth of the Unpopular President Obama

obama-thumbs-upRecently I wrote an article condemning those Democrats who’ve run away from President Obama heading into this election year. It’s just made absolutely no sense to me. This is a president who’s cut our deficits by $1 trillion, presided over the longest period of private sector job growth in our nation’s history, produced record stock levels and passed historic health care reform. Just to name a few things that he’s accomplished during his time in the White House. If he were a Republican, just on his economic numbers alone, they would be hoisting him up high as a GOP legend.

But Democrats are apparently ashamed of Obama’s record. After all, why would a party want to get behind the man who’s created over 10 million jobs and authorized the successful killing of Osama bin Ladin? Anyone could have done that, right George W. Bush? Oh… nevermind.

A lot of this nonsense is driven by our media. All I hear in the news, even on networks like MSNBC and CNN, is how unpopular the president is and how horrible his approval numbers are. And they’re right, his numbers are low. According to Gallup, Obama’s approval rating is about 40 percent. Clearly that’s not ideal, but if you look at his overall trend, his approval rating has gone between 40-50 percent pretty much since about six months after he took office. So it’s not as if his numbers have suddenly shot down to 40 percent. And if people were giving him a 50 percent approval rating about six months into his first term, that’s a clear sign many people don’t know what the hell they’re talking about. Especially considering the circumstances he faced upon entering the White House.

Either way, should we really be considering these numbers “low”? If he’s unpopular, then what the hell does that say about the rest of our government? When it comes to Congress, their numbers make Obama look like a rock star.

Right now the approval rating for Congress sits at 14 percent. And when you get down to the two most powerful people in Congress, Speaker of the House John Boehner’s favorability rating currently sits at 28 percent while Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s is down to 21 percent. Though Reid has an abnormally high “no opinion” response of 34 percent.

In fact, the last time Congress had an approval rating over 20 percent was October 2012 – two years ago.  Congress is less popular than head lice.

It’s not Obama who’s unpopular, it’s our government as a whole. When you get right down to the numbers, even though 40 percent is much lower than is ideal for the president, his approval rating is still much higher than that of Congress or its two most powerful party leaders.

And the worst part is, history tells us that about 90 percent of incumbents usually win re-election.

So, what does this all mean? Well, it shows many Americans clearly don’t understand how our government works. A president can only accomplish as much as Congress will allow him to. When half of that Congress has absolutely no intention of doing anything to work with the president, there’s not a whole lot he can do. Honestly, what can a president do when the controlling faction in the House of Representatives has one goal: to support the opposite of whatever it is the president wants.

Which is exactly what Obama has dealt with since 2010.

The fact that Republicans are set to gain seats this November really shows how too many Americans don’t know a damn thing about our government. The approval rating for Congress went from 40 percent just before Republicans took the House in 2010 all the way down to an all-time low of 9 percent last November following the government shutdown. Republicans are the damn problem.

But they are the party set to make gains tomorrow. It makes absolutely zero sense.

Well, it kind of does make sense. When Democrats cowardly decided to run away from Obama they sealed their own fate. Instead of boasting about the policies they support that have created millions of jobs, brought our unemployment down below 6 percent and gave millions of Americans health insurance – they stuck their head in the sand like a bunch of spineless losers.

I’m sorry if all this sounds harsh, but I’m pissed off.

What is it that Republicans are actually running on? Not running against – we all know they’re against Obama. But what the hell are they running on?

Absolutely nothing.

Their “economic plan” is the same b.s. we saw under George W. Bush. Tell me, how well did that work out for our economy last time? But, by all means, let’s do that again. Social issues? Please. On every major social issue they stand against what the majority of Americans support.

But yes, let’s elect more people who believe the Earth is 6,000 years old and science is nothing more than some kind of fancy liberal magic show. People who claim gay marriage is going to cause God to bring down Armageddon and that guns have nothing to do with gun violence. Politicians who believe that money equals free speech. Because we damn sure don’t have enough money in our political process. We need to keep electing politicians who want more of it corrupting our government.

And because Democrats acted like cowards, and liberals feel like being apathetic this election, that’s most likely exactly what we’re going to get more of tomorrow.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.


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