President Obama’s approval numbers have gone up recently and now voters say they prefer him to all 2016 presidential candidates.
In an Associated Press-GfK poll, 53% of respondents had a favorable view of Obama, more than any of the presidential candidates. And guess what… after Obama, the list is Democrat, Democrat, Republican, Republican, Republican.
The two 2016 Democratic presidential candidates lead: Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) got 48% favorability and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton got 40% favorability. Given the relentless Republican taxpayer funded assaults on Hillary Clinton (Benghazi and the emails), 40% is pretty good.
No other politician except President Obama has been on the receiving end of deeply funded, relentless conspiracy attacks meant to drive down political capital and public trust. As Republicans shifted their attack focus to Clinton, the press has followed and thus Obama has been allowed to operate as he is and it turns out the public likes him. No shocker there, since they elected him twice by quite a margin.
The three 2016 Republican presidential hopefuls bring up the rear. Governor John Kasich (R-OH) has a 34% favorability rating and Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Donald Trump are tied at 26% favorability.
Poll analysts pointed out that the approval for President Obama includes many issues, “including foreign affairs, immigration and, most notably the economy, where people said they felt slightly better about their own prospects and Obama’s stewardship.”
During Obama’s two terms as a President he has made history often, notably for things that helped people. He is presiding over record setting private sector job growth, his national push to raise the minimum wage regionally since Republicans would not even consider it in Congress is working, he got millions covered with healthcare insurance, an historic Iran deal, a global climate change initiative, and so much more.
After the years long Republican Obamacare hysteria, they transitioned without taking a breath into Benghazi conspiracy tales. For all of their talk about the deficit and government waste, Republicans have spent $20.5 million chasing their fictional Benghazi stories — even after their hopes were dashed by evidence repeatedly. They’re still trying to sell their shred of a lie to the voters in order to politically harm President Obama and Hillary Clinton, and these are the poll numbers after those efforts. Yes, they have successfully brought down the two Democrats’ poll numbers, but not by enough.
It’s also telling that Republicans do not try to win on their own, but instead focus on bringing down their competition. This is the strategy of losers. A loser is always looking around, a winner looks ahead focused on their own goal and path.
These are not the sort of numbers that Republicans were hoping for. If they could have wounded President Obama permanently with one of their phony scandals, they could have attached Clinton to it and the Democrats would have been lost two leaders who motivate the party base. Instead Republicans are stuck with three popular Democrats, one of them is even a Democratic Socialist. Oh, my.
This poll is just more proof that the Republican obstruction strategy of catering to special interests, big money and their base is not a winning national strategy. Sure their constituents like it in gerrymandered areas, but the White House is out of reach. It is precisely the actions of Republicans in Congress that made Donald Trump and Ted Cruz inevitable front-runners for the Republican party. This is who they are now. And the country is not impressed.
The country digs the dude in the White House, though. How do you like him now, Republicans?
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.