The Wall Street Journal has some important news about that Obama comeback:
The latest poll from the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press shows 46% of Americans approve of the job he’s doing, a two-point drop from a similar poll taken last June, while 44% disapprove. The numbers are similarly static when it comes to his handling of specific issues, from health care to Iraq to the budget deficit.
A Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday showed a slightly bigger bounce in his approval ratings, with 48% of those polls approving of the job he’s doing, up from 44%. But the trend was still relatively flat from polls taken in the months heading up to the election.
The much-heralded lame-duck comeback was most notable for how low it set the bar for comebacks. Legislation passed. Period. Not overwhelmingly liberal legislation, mind you — just legislation. The repeal of DADT was an 80/20 issue with plenty of hawkish conservatives supporting it. Many conservatives were indifferent about New START, and those who fought against its immediate ratification were effective in getting important missile-defense and nuclear-modernization changes added before it was voted on. Extending the Bush tax cuts was among the highest priorities for conservatives. That it happened and was even defended by the administration as sound economics can hardly be counted as a liberal achievement. A real comeback will take more than a week of properly functioning government.