It’s no secret that, as a smart Brookings Institution pundit conceded recently to me, that the CBS/New York Times poll “slants left.” So that makes the latest survey all the more bracing for the White House ( if they’d stop ignoring bad news):
[D]espite intense news coverage and widespread public concern about the economic and ecological damage from the gulf disaster, most Americans remain far more concerned about jobs and the nation’s overall economy.
And in that regard, President Obama does not fare well: 54 percent of the public say he does not have a clear plan for creating jobs, while only 34 percent say he does, an ominous sign heading into this fall’s midterm elections.
Respondents were nearly evenly split on the president’s handling of the economy — 45 percent approve, 48 percent disapprove. His job approval rating remains just below 50 percent. And by a nearly 2-to-1 margin, Americans think the country is on the wrong track.
They are also impatient with Mr. Obama’s response to the oil disaster in the gulf, by a large margin, and attribute the spill to risks taken by BP and its partners in the failed well, according to the poll, which was conducted by telephone from June 16 to 2o with 1,259 adults.
And after his widely panned Oval office, the poll shows 59% of respondents don’t think Obama has a plan for cleaning up the Gulf.
The decline in Obama’s fortunes is not solely attributable to the oil spill, of course. It’s been a long time in coming, although Times readers have been sheltered from much of the bad news for Obama ( much like the president himself, we suspect). If they only read the Times, they might have missed the warning signs in the 2009 gubernatorial elections, written off the election of Scott Brown as a fluke, clung to the belief that the public would learn to love ObamaCare and been convinced George W. Bush could be blamed for everything that went wrong. But there’s no averting their eyes now — Obama and his party are in a heap of trouble and the election will in all likelihood deal a punishing blow to Democrats unlucky enough to be on the ballot.