October 14, 2003


Poll: U.S. discontent increasing (Susan Page, 10/14/2003 , USA TODAY)

Solid majorities of Americans support changes in the nation's political system, want the power to recall elected officials and are angry about the way some things are going in this country. [...]

But that frustration isn't focused on the current President Bush or other elected officials, at least not yet. Bush scored a healthy job-approval rating of 56%, up from its low point of 50% last month.

This should give the President much needed encouragement to avoid Ronald Reagan's mistake in 1984 and run on some big ideas. Among those should be Social Security privatization and a complete overhaul of the tax system -- transition to a value-added tax -- both presented as ways to transfer power from bureaucrats to the people.

Posted by Orrin Judd at October 14, 2003 7:56 AM

These poll results are bogus. The Democratic population is oversampled (456 registered Dems in a population of 1004 adults and 870 registered voters). Results would be closer to reality if the Dem proportion was about 34% of the population (which is what it is in the general population). This bias was very clearly domonstrated in the polls leading up to the California recall election, where they consistently showed Cruz B. ahead of or close to Arnold; in reality, his fortunes always fluctuated between "disaster" and "crushing defeat". Another exampl of media propping up unpopular Democrats as long as they can, to give an impression of widespread support to Democratic losers.

Posted by: sam at October 14, 2003 8:37 AM

Yes. And I had hoped to hear about some of those big ideas after the administration got back to business in the fall. Still waiting.

Posted by: Jerome Howard at October 14, 2003 8:58 AM

Jerome - nobody's paying attention yet. Look for the new ideas in the SOTU in January (and after the Super Bowl).
This poll may be bogus but if played right the GOP can focus this anger onto the Dems in Washington, particularly the Senate, as obstructionists that need to go.

Posted by: AWW at October 14, 2003 9:07 AM

You can't pass anything significant until the Democrats are down to 39 seats in the Senate.

Posted by: OJ at October 14, 2003 9:15 AM

I'd still rather see them start to talk about some bold domestic ideas and try to control the national dialogue, like they've begun to do in Iraq. This rather than wait for the laundry list approach in the SOTU.

They seem to be coasting.

Posted by: Jerome Howard at October 14, 2003 10:06 AM

Hogberg's got an interesting article up that he wrote about SS and union members.

Posted by: Sandy P. at October 14, 2003 11:28 AM