Why is the President’s once stratospheric approval level continuing to sink? The predominant meme at work on March 23, 2010, just after passage of ObamaCare was of an ObamaCare Bump for the president and burgeoning support for the controversial legislation.
Yet the president’s approval rating has sunk five points since that policy victory. Perhaps the decline can be attributed to Speaker Pelosi’s admonition that the bill must be passed so that voters could learn what was in it. But Americans are also learning, and some sheepish media outlets like the Washington Post are finally admitting, that much of the narrative surrounding the bill’s passage was simply made up. The Stupak Deception was a surprise to some but the reports of an alleged racist, spitting mob surrounding Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II that Sunday the vote was held was easily recognized by many Americans as race baiting. What we know know now is that, having successfully crammed down a highly unpopular piece of legislation, Democrats could not help themselves and obnoxiously engaged in their favorite activity, labeling their opponents racists.
There is a reason why this President and Congress are sinking in the polls: they are estranged from their constituents and the race baiting is exacerbating their political problems. (As Jay noted today, this approach isn’t working for Democrats.)
Republicans should be wary, though. While Democrats may get crushed in the polls in November (Nate Silver estimates that the current generic ballot points toward a 50+ seat loss for the Democrats), President Obama is looking much better which may explain his confidence right now. The President can lose Florida, North Carolina, Virginia, Ohio, and Indiana (all states he won in 2008) and still win reelection. Republicans can sweep these states and will still need Nevada, New Mexico and Colorado plus a rust belt state surprise, like Pennsylvania. There are other electoral combinations that may result in President Obama’s defeat. But the Liberal Left seems content that the Northeast and Left Coast states will indulge their racist polemic and swallow the hypocrisy necessary to whip up a requisite amount of rage in some key Midwestern states. In the meantime, Democrats continue to own racial politics more today than at any time since the War Between The States.
H/T Glenn Reynolds