AP to Americans: Stop being “grouchy”

posted at 11:36 am on November 11, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Dan Calabrese notices a scolding tone coming from the Associated Press in reporting its latest polling.  It headlines the report by noting that “a grouchy public [is] sticking with Obama,” having seen a 54% job approval rating in its survey — but some bad numbers on the issues.  Does the AP report those falling levels of support as a consequence of Barack Obama doing a poor job?  No, as emphases from Dan and myself show:

The public grew slightly more dispirited on a range of matters over the past month, including war and the economy, continuing the slippage that has occurred since Obama took office, the latest Associated Press-GfK poll shows.

This comes at a time when he is trying to revive the struggling economy, considering sending more troops to the 8-year-old Afghanistan war, muscling a health care reform overhaul through Congress and hoping to push through other ambitious measures like legislation focused on climate change.

People were gloomier about the direction of the country than in October. They disapproved of Obama’s handling of the economy a bit more than before. And, perhaps most striking for the commander in chief, more people have lost confidence in Obama on Iraq and Afghanistan over the last month. Overall, there’s a malaise about the state of the nation. …

Public attitudes like that are troubling for a president trying to accomplish an ambitious agenda at home while fighting wars abroad, as well as for a Democratic Party heading into a critical election year. It will have to stave off losses that a new president typically experiences in his first midterm elections. A third of the Senate, all of the House and most governors’ offices will be on the ballot.

Come on, you gloomy Guses!  Obama’s trying really hard!  What’s wrong with you, America?

Dan says that this is just the nature of the AP and reporter Liz Sidoti:

I actually think the AP uses language like this without even realizing it. It’s just second nature to a writer like Liz Sidoti, whose preconceived notion of the world tells her everything Obama is trying to do is heroic and awesome. Her storyline does not concern whether these things are good. She presumes they are good and reports on how much success Obama is having achieving them.

As for 54 percent of the public approving of Obama, that’s not impressive historically for this stage in a presidency, and you will find buried in the story that it’s way down from the 74 percent he enjoyed on Inauguration Day, before he had actually governed anything. … It’s a good thing 54 percent of you – in a poll that surely oversamples Democrats – still proclaim your support for President Obama. It’s your one saving grace.

Since Dan asked the question, let’s find the answer in the survey’s data.  Sure enough, the poll sample breaks down thusly: 43% Democrats, 31% Republicans, and, er, six percent independents (19% say they “didn’t know).  That twelve-point gap is actually an increase of one point from the previous month’s poll.  It doubles the Gallup survey difference from last month on party identification, and the independent-leaners split (10%-8% GOP) is laughable considering today’s Gallup polling on independents.

Even with the skewed sample (and polling adults rather than voters or likely voters), that approval rating doesn’t really hold up well.  On the economy, Obama’s approval swung nine points from 50/44 to 46/49 over the last month.  On Iraq, Obama swung 14 points from 50/37 to 46/45.  The swing on taxes was ten points, from 47/41 to 42/46, although his health-care numbers look steady, if weak at 49/46.  On Afghanistan, people have gotten tired of waiting and Obama swung eleven points to the negative, from an already weak 46/41 to underwater at 42/48.

Oh, and the White House had better take notice of this tidbit, too: Obama went underwater on unemployment as well, from 48/43 a month ago to 44/47 now.  Obama owns the 10.2% unemployment rate, and even oversampling Democrats can’t hide the fact that people are tired of hearing Obama blame Bush.  They’re not grouchy about it, either.  They’re starting to get angry.

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I’ve worked 60 hours a week and haven’t made a single sale since since this POS took office. As a Contingency Recruiter, I work on commission and do not earn a salary. After work today, I’m getting rid of my only car in order to cut down on expenses. As an optimistic person, the only semi-positive thing I have learned through all of this is, how to save more and live on A LOT less.

Devrbd on November 11, 2009 at 12:54 PM

AP thinks we are ‘grouchy’??
and TOTUS is supposed to be some ATLAS hefting the weight of the world?

You aint seen nuthin yet AP! Wait til the SWEEP in 2010!

epic I tell ya it’s gonna be EPIC!

ginaswo on November 11, 2009 at 12:55 PM

Mojave Mark

yes but dont forget we need to modify the kisery index to account for having a Gentle Ben sintead of a Volcker at the helm at the FED

The misery index includes interest rates which the FED is holding artificially low (negative!)

were they allowed to move naturally

We would IMO be exceeding the last MIS INDEX already, people have nothing to fall back on no credit lines no equity, nothing they had in the 70s…

ginaswo on November 11, 2009 at 12:57 PM

Buy Danish on November 11, 2009 at 12:26 PM

Never despair. I pray over each application, and although it’s disappointing when yet another falls through, I have faith that the job the Lord wants me to be in will come exactly when it is supposed to.

Prayer isn’t helping with the anger issue, though. ;-)

Oh Mercy on November 11, 2009 at 12:59 PM

Obama’s increasing unpopularity gives me hope. Then my hope is crushed because there isn’t a Ronald Reagan waiting in the wings.

gwelf on November 11, 2009 at 12:20 PM

Agreed. I am greatly discouraged by *anyone* in the GOP wings that gives me confidence right now.

Midas on November 11, 2009 at 1:00 PM

Please comment on this question…

Is it just me or do you think that the American public is becoming better educated about what is going on politically?

Personally I am more in tune and better educated than I was in 1994. But I don’t know if it’s my age or something else. I know there are still a LOT of idiots that see stars everytime BHO farts, but I am getting the feeling that slowly people are tuning in and starting to pay attention. I also think this isn’t being factored into the ’10 and ’12 elections…

just wondering…

Ltlgeneral64 on November 11, 2009 at 1:03 PM

America to the AP: BITE ME!!!

capejasmine on November 11, 2009 at 1:12 PM

betsyz on November 11, 2009 at 12:48 PM

Thank You, and I second that, God Bless All Our Great American Veterans those who have served and are now serving. I am grateful for their service and sacrifice. God Bless America.

Dr Evil on November 11, 2009 at 1:12 PM

Wait for it…Barry’s “MalaiseGrouchy” speech.

Christien on November 11, 2009 at 1:13 PM

We are gloomy because of what he’s trying to do to us not for us.

roux on November 11, 2009 at 1:13 PM

Please comment on this question…

Is it just me or do you think that the American public is becoming better educated about what is going on politically?

Ltlgeneral64 on November 11, 2009 at 1:03 PM

Most definitely.

I had my political awakening about 15 years ago (at about age 30), so I had a bit of a head start. And it wasn’t a sudden awakening; I had started questioning things and sorting things out years before that.

Since then (and with increasing frequency of late) I have been engaged in political discussions with many people. Not always arguments, either. They are mostly informative and educational for all involved.

UltimateBob on November 11, 2009 at 1:24 PM

AP to Americans: Stop being “grouchy”

You think we’re grouchy NOW?

Just keep shoving those 2,000 page, trillion-dollar spending bills down our throats. You’ll see just how grouchy we can get when the tea parties turn into tar-and-feathering parties.

UltimateBob on November 11, 2009 at 1:29 PM

American to AP

Get some backbone you spineless bunch of cowards.

bluegrass on November 11, 2009 at 1:32 PM

Grouchy? You ain’t seen nuthin’ yet.

BottomLine5 on November 11, 2009 at 1:33 PM

They’re starting to get angry.

About effing time.

angryed on November 11, 2009 at 1:36 PM

My work has nearly vanished. A few of the reasons have nothing to do with Osama Obama, but his handling of the economy has just about put the final nails in the coffin.

The “lavish” life I once led — you know, things like being able to buy groceries every week and pay bills on time — is over, and all those I see around me are faring as poorly.

Where’s the “miracle,” O Chicago Jesus? Where is the vibrant America we used to live in? It has been sold to foreign countries (some of whom wish us ill), smothered in phony money that makes the Democrat-approved fat-cats fatter and, in the case of national defense and strength, has been encouraged to wither.

The only thing that can save us now is the resignation of Obama and his cadre of America-hating goons.

MrScribbler on November 11, 2009 at 1:40 PM

capejasmine on November 11, 2009 at 1:12 PM

That was my first thought! lol

becki51758 on November 11, 2009 at 1:47 PM

Malaise? Once again my equation is proven:

Nixon + Carter = Obama

Math sure can be fun!

MeAlice on November 11, 2009 at 1:56 PM

Ltlgeneral64 on November 11, 2009 at 1:03 PM

I want to believe yes with all my heart…but my brain is telling me that the answer is probably no. Maybe we are making some in-roads and people are starting to pay attention to how badly the media is skewed left and also how badly the gov’t is encroaching on our liberties…I think the proof will be in the results of the next elections….

search4truth on November 11, 2009 at 2:07 PM

Just wait until this White House has its Carter “killer rabbit” moment. Malaise smalaise, AP ain’t seen nothing yet. Jimmah’s “adultery in my heart” stand up routine was a classic too. Throw in the Obama administration’s Nixonian dirty tricks and paranoia, in addition to no jobs and probable inflation, and you can bet on the next elections being a route.

MayorDaley on November 11, 2009 at 2:36 PM

MeAlice on November 11, 2009 at 1:56 PM

I have two settings Happy and Pissed Off :) Malaise, is that French for I surrender? LOL!

Dr Evil on November 11, 2009 at 3:23 PM

Look, Obama has gotten to where he is (Columbia, Harvard, ILL Senate, US Senate & President of the United States) by merely being born & showing up. Now that he is kind of sort of trying (in between golf games & vacays, ‘natch) it is only natural that he would expect us to be grateful/thrilled/in awe. {rolls eyes}

Dark Star on November 11, 2009 at 3:24 PM

I ready to be part of the Vast Right Wing Temper Tantrum next November.

karl9000 on November 11, 2009 at 3:48 PM

It goes beyond grouchy for me. And every time I hear some ignorant lefty say something about the “tea-baggers” my blood pressure goes up. When they do that they insult every American.

4shoes on November 11, 2009 at 4:22 PM

“Don’t make me angry, you wouldn’t like me when I’m angry”.

5u93rm4n on November 11, 2009 at 5:21 PM

Time to restart the Misery Index.

13Girl on November 11, 2009 at 5:31 PM