There are times when I read a blog and slap my forehead and think to myself that I really wish I had written that. I had one such forehead slapping moment when I read this gem at Creative Minority Report by Matthew Archbold:
Hey, some are saying, Obama’s sagging job approval numbers don’t mean anything because his personal favorables are doing fine.
Hot Airhas this quote from the National Journal but as Ed Morrissey says, they’re far from the only one pushing this meme.
President Obama, whose job-approval ratings are mired well south of 50 percent, has an important factor breaking his way as he seeks another term: Americans still overwhelmingly like the guy.
So we’re supposed to ignore his job approval numbers and focus on whether people like him as a person.
Hmmm. It doesn’t seem that long ago that the exact opposite was true. Remember around the time of Bill Clinton’s impeachment all the media would talk about was that while his personal approval numbers were in the tank, HIS JOB PERFORMANCE NUMBERS WERE SKY HIGH!!!! AND THAT’S WHAT REALLY MATTERS!!!
ABC News had this to say:
You can’t trust him, he’s got weak morals and ethics — and he’s done a heck of a good job… Despite his prevaricating, his sexual misadventures and his impeachment by Congress, a remarkable 65 percent of Americans approve of the way Clinton has done his job —
Even on the weekend of his impeachment trial, CBS News reported:
Throughout most of this year, more than six in ten adults have approved of the way the President has handled his job. Approval has occasionally risen even higher, as the public rallies to Bill Clinton in times of crisis.
So…long story short. Under Bill Clinton all that mattered was job approval numbers but now under Obama all that matters is personal favorability.
Go here to read the brilliant rest. When you consider some of our presidents: LBJ, Nixon and Clinton for example, you might suspect that personal favorability probably doesn’t enter much into the final voting decision and you would probably be right. We all appreciate a nice guy, but if he can’t do the job we hired him to do, we get someone else.