George W. Bush may have won the election in November, but the president and his party are losing the war for the hearts and minds of Americans. A new Washington Post/ABC News poll has bad news for the Republicans on virtually every front.
The Republican plan to end the filibuster in order to get Bush’s judicial nominees through the Senate? The public opposes it, 66 percent to 22 percent. Are Democrats right to block some of Bush’s judges? The public says yes, 48 percent to 36 percent. Are judges in America too liberal, too conservative or just about right? Seventy percent say they’re too conservative or just about right; only 26 percent say they’re too liberal.
The president’s plan to privatize Social Security? In mid-March, the poll found Americans in support of the proposal, 56-44. Now they’re opposed, 51-46.
But wait, there’s more. The Post says its poll “also registered drops in key Bush performance ratings, growing pessimism about the economy and continuing concern about U.S. involvement in Iraq.” While Bush still gets good numbers for his war on terrorism, there’s bad news there, too: Americans are so concerned about the economy — and gas prices, for which they blame him more than the oil companies — that terrorism is no longer at the top of the public’s list of priorities, the poll found.
If the president has a plan for turning around public opinion, we haven’t seen it yet. He’s campaigning again today for Social Security reform, this time in Texas — with Tom DeLay at his side.