Commentary Magazine


Obama No Better Than Bush?

Looks like Bush’s Worst President in History title didn’t last long. The majority of Americans now believe President Obama is worse or no different than President Bush, according to the latest from Gallup:

Asked to compare Barack Obama with George W. Bush, Americans are more inclined to say Obama has been a better (43 percent) rather than a worse (34 percent) president, with 22 percent seeing no difference between the two. Obama compares much less favorably to Bill Clinton, with half saying Obama has been worse than Clinton and 12 percent saying better.

And independent voters give Obama even lower scores, saying that he’s worse than Bush, 38 percent to 33 percent. Another 29 percent said they’re “about the same.”

A lot of conservatives have said history would view Bush in a better light, but it’s noteworthy it took less than one term for his image to get to this point. Not that it’s a major accomplishment to rate better or equal to the Obama presidency, but remember, Obama was supposed to be the Lincoln/FDR/MLK reincarnate who would slow the rise of the oceans and bring eternal peace to earth. It’s not so much that Bush improved, but that Obama dropped significantly. So significantly he can’t even outperform his predecessor, who Democrats widely deride as the worst president of all time.

Speaking of performance, are we sure Obama’s approval ratings aren’t equal or lower than Bush’s at the moment? I know there was a poll last spring that showed Bush’s approval ratings had rebounded to 50 percent since the end of his presidency. And now Obama’s in the 40-and-below range. That would definitely be an interesting comparison.