I still have mixed feelings about the Bush presidency, but after more than four years of President Obama, he’s looking better. He’s rising in the polls, too. He now pretty much matches Obama in approval rating.
It took less than 4 1/2 years of the Obama presidency for President George W. Bush to mount his comeback. While doing absolutely nothing on his own behalf (he’s been the most silent ex-president in my lifetime), his approval is up to 47 percent according to The Post/ABC poll. That’s up 14 points from his final poll in office. For comparison’s sake President Obama’s RCP average is a tad over 49 percent.
Why the shift? Aside from the “memories fade” point, many of his supposed failures are mild compared to the current president (e.g. spending, debt). Unlike Obama’s tenure, there was no successful attack on the homeland after 9/11. People do remember the big stuff — rallying the country after the Twin Towers attack, 7 1/2 years of job growth and prosperity, millions of people saved from AIDS in Africa, a good faith try for immigration reform, education reform and a clear moral compass. (Read More)
One thing that gets to me about the criticisms of Bush is that so many people ding him for the Iraq war. Sure, there were plenty of mistakes made, but those who bash him were all for it before we invaded. When things got tough all of a sudden they were against it. Then they were against the surge that was successful, before giving Obama credit for getting us out. It’s insane. Oh, and you know who else was against the Iraq War? Dhzokhar Tsarnaev. Color me shocked. At least the Iraqis appear to be grateful.
But one thing you can say is that George W. Bush is a good man. I don’t think he’s a radical who wanted to fundamentally transform this great republic. If anything, he tried too hard to please the other side. The more he worked with them, the more they attacked him. Now all of the things the left loathed about Bush, Obama is doubling down on, and we hear nary a peep. Go figure.
Anyway, sorry for the light blogging today. I went to work and then one of my sons had a baseball game so most of the day and evening was shot.
Here’s video of Glenn Reynolds talking to Walter Russel Mead about the Bush legacy and what it means for the Republican Party going forward. Is Bush the modern version of Herbert Hoover? I’ll just say that Bush didn’t bring about the war on terror, but at least he was willing to give it a name. Plus, until the crash of 2008, which Bush did try to do something about, the economy was doing pretty well, not that the media made it out to be that way. Now they breathlessly report all of the bogus statistics they can get their hands on to give the impression that the economy is humming along.
Well, with any luck, maybe the Koch brothers will buy up that major newspaper outlet and help to start bringing a little balance to the media.
Update: I forgot to mention “compassionate conservatism,” which was a great selling point. But here’s the thing with conservatives, we believe in being compassionate with our own money. We give to charity much more than liberals. This is really just another example of how Bush did good things for people in need, with our tax dollars, and then was bashed by the liberals because he didn’t spend enough, before they bashed him for spending too much. You can never win with the progressives and the media, and I think that’s one thing Bush got wrong. I think he underestimated how much the media would be against him, no matter what he did.