A Lesson In Misreading the Polls

There’s no reason to believe Republicans will change their “strategy” of full court obstruction anytime soon. They and their Unitary Executive, W,  made the mess but they’ll be damned if they let anyone else try to clean it up. Yesterday, noted GOP toadie, Tom Cole, admitted as much in a quote picked up over at PW:

“We’re very comfortable where we’re at; we have very few members who feel endangered. We feel like we are reflecting a broader mood of dissatisfaction. Right now, the American people want us saying no.”

Notice that he makes no mention of the American people asking the GOP what exactly they would do if they were to control Congress again. Boehner, for his part, expanded on his “obstructionism” plan today, outlining what his moratorium on federal regulation would look like. Unfortunately for his “gubmint is bad” base, it basically calls for a whole new level of bureaucracy and expansion of government as related to spending and is hardly the complete halt that he originally called for. Which explains why no one wants to talk about Republican platforms, least of all during a campaign!

But I digress. Despite the Republicans’ best efforts at governing principles, they’ve staked their claim on the mantra of NO! And really, the only problem with that strategy is reality:

Despite a tough year for President Obama’s approval rating, a new Pew Research poll finds Americans still think his administration’s policies offer a better chance at improving the economy over the policies of former President Bush by a 46% to 29% margin.

And make no mistake, the policies that the Republicans have advanced (repealing regulation, tax cuts for the wealthy, privatizing Social Security) are exactly like those of Bush. Remember, the American people that Tom Cole is talking about are the 19-25% that thought Bush was doing a good job when he left office. They may call themselves Tea-baggers now, but they’re really just the base that Cole and Boehner are playing to. That may be enough to give the Politico headline fodder and may even win them some seats but the polls clearly show that the American people are not ready to return to the “glory years” of 2001-2008.

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