Why have Obama’s approval ratings skyrocketed?
- 8% jump in Obama’s approval ratings since December
The question is, why? It feels like only yesterday that oil was spewing wildly throughout the Gulf Coast, Democrats were getting shellacked in the midterms, and prognosticators were foretelling of a one-term Obama presidency (well, okay, that’s still happening). But the President’s favorability ratings have been surging recently, up to the highest levels since July of ‘09. We have three theories as to why.
- The lame duck session It was controversial to some, but for many Americans, the lame duck session was the first time they got to see members of Congress acting in a truly bipartisan manner. The President took an active role in this, hammering out compromises with GOP leadership. The result was one of the most productive lame duck sessions in our nation’s history. Also, nobody’s taxes went up.
- A divided government In other words, the Republicans taking back the House. When one party controls the White House, the Senate, and the House, it’s easy to uniformly hate that party for the country’s problems. But with things a little more evenly divided, the President is getting some slack. It’s not necessarily a well-founded reason for liking the President more, but it’s likely a factor.
- The Tuscon shootingOkay, okay. We didn’t want to say it, but it’s true: After national tragedies, especially those with a human face, people tend to coalesce around the President. It happened with Bush after 9/11, and it’s happening now. Combine this with a wildly popular speech a few days after the shooting, and you have the recipe for surging approval ratings. source
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