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Americans Negative On Bush On All Fronts, Particularly The Economy

The number of Americans who disapprove of President Bush’s performance on seven major issues has grown, according to a Feb.11-14 Gallup poll. The poll says that overall, 65 percent of Americans disapprove of the President’s performance compared to 31 percent who approve. His approval ratings have consistently been below 40 percent since Sept. 2006.

Bush did not score a majority approval rating on any of these issues: terrorism, foreign affairs, Iraq, the economy, energy policy, healthcare policy or immigration. His best rating -47 percent approval – came on the issue of terrorism. His lowest marks were for handling of immigration. The biggest drop in approval was on his handling of the economy, falling from 41 percent last year to 27 percent in this most recent survey.

Gallup added in a separate analysis that its Feb.11-14 survey found that the economy had surpassed the war in Iraq as the Number One issue for voters for the first time since March 2004.

These findings are echoed by an American Research Group poll conducted Feb.16-19 that put the disapproval rating of Bush at 77 percent. The economy is again a big driver of this result with 78 percent of those surveyed (registered voters) say the economy is getting worse and 47 percent believe it is already in recession. Bush naturally does better among Republicans with a 45 percent approval rating, but even here, 50 percent disapprove of his performance.

For background stories on the economy, visit the CQ Politics Issue page. Also James Surowiecki has a good piece in the New Yorker on economic stimulus strategies.

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