Presidential aides and democratic officials aren’t even trying to disguise it anymore. Quote after quote provided to the press by unnamed sources or uttered aloud by White House advisors in what were thought to be private moments indicates that the administration sees a prospective nuclear agreement with Iran as Barack Obama’s final positive legacy achievement as president.
The president must be hoping that history vindicates his actions, because the polls sure aren’t. As the security environment in the middle east continues to deteriorate, the public is expressing dissatisfaction with how Obama has approached relations with America’s adversaries and allies alike.
The White House’s disdainful treatment of Israel, and it’s thinly veiled efforts to turn the public against the Jewish state like releasing the details of the extent of Israel’s penetration of the nuclear negotiations with Iran, appears to have backfired. According to the findings of a new CBS News poll, 29 percent of respondents say that the United States gives Israel too much support while 27 percent say the current level of support is too little. Not much of a difference, right? It’s not, until you learn that the number of respondents who say the U.S. provides Israel with too little support has increased by 10 points in just the last four years.
The administration’s determination to secure a nuclear deal with Iran no matter the cost has apparently disturbed the American public as much as it has United States allies in the region. CBS News discovered that 47 percent disapprove of the president’s handling of relations with Iran while 38 percent approve. A majority of Republicans disapprove of Obama’s approach to relations with Iran while a majority of Democrats approve, but a large plurality of independents – 48 percent – join Republicans in disapproving of Obama’s approach to the Islamic Republic.
As for ISIS, 65 percent of the public thinks the fight against that apocalyptic militant insurgency is going “badly” while just 28 percent apparently think things could be worse. The bright spot in this poll for Obama is that the increasing chaos in the Middle East has caused many Americans to rethink the logic of committing American troops to the fight against the Islamic State. In February, 57 percent of respondents backed a return of U.S. ground troops the region. Today, only 43 percent favor this approach.
“The percentage of Americans that views ISIS as a major threat to the U.S. is about the same as it was last month. Now, 62 percent view it as a major threat to the U.S., and another 21 percent see it as a minor threat. Just 13 percent say ISIS is not a threat,” CBS News reported.
As for Obama’s approach to foreign policy in general, a majority – 51 percent – disapprove while 39 percent approve. Obama’s overall job approval rating remains stable and more poll respondents are beginning to see the economy steadily improving, but the number of respondents who said the country is on the “wrong track” increased from 56 percent in February to 62 percent. The only likely reason for this increase is the suboptimal state of affairs in the increasingly volatile Middle East.
The backlash against Obama’s handling of U.S. foreign policy may finally be materializing.