Bush, Obama, and the Restoration of Perspective

As Pete mentioned earlier, a new Gallup poll has George W. Bush’s approval rating up at 47 percent. This means that the former president currently enjoys a one-point lead on Barack Obama, whose current approval rating is at 46 percent. There is a sensible urge to dismiss the significance of such polls. All presidents become more popular after leaving office. It’s unlikely they all benefit from the spontaneous acknowledgement of their true genius. Nostalgia and a grass-is-greener impulse are as much responsible for these opinion rehabilitations as are fact-based assessments. Bush, like all American ex-presidents, is benefitting from his fellow citizens’ sentimentality and their appreciation for the difficulties of the office, no matter who holds it.  But the fact that Bush was once thought so deleterious to the country as to be a presidential outlier makes this insignificant development extremely significant.

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Bush, Obama, and the Restoration of Perspective

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