Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Clinton Blows Bush Out of the Water

How bad has it gotten for President Bush? Bad enough that in the eyes of many Americans his predecessor, President Clinton, is looking better.

Our CNN poll, conducted by Opinion Research Corporation, asked people to compare the last two Presidents.

Which President do people think did a better job on the economy? The public picked Clinton by a mile -- 63 to 26 percent. For many Americans, the 1990s were boom years. "When he was President," a woman told us, "My business did well and I made a lot of money. I kind of miss that."

Who related better to problems affecting ordinary Americans? No contest -- Clinton over Bush, 62 to 25 percent. Clinton felt your pain. Clinton also raised taxes. Bush cut taxes. Who wins on that one? Surprise! Clinton, 51 to 35 percent on taxes.

After 9/11, national security became Bush's strongest issue. And now? People think Clinton was better on national security by a nose -- 46 to 42 percent. What happened? One word: Iraq.

Now for a tough test -- character. The character issue was crucial for Bush, who campaigned in 2000 on this promise: "When I put my hand on the Bible, I will swear not only to uphold the laws of the land, I will swear to uphold the honor and dignity of the office to which I have been elected."

So which President do Americans now consider more honest and trustworthy -- the man who said, "I misled people, including even my wife," or the man who said, "If somebody did leak classified information, I'd like to know it and we'll take the appropriate action"? A close call, but slightly more people say Clinton -- 46 to 41 percent. That's right, by a narrow margin, the American public now considers Bill Clinton more honest than George W. Bush.

Could Clinton nostalgia be setting in? Many respondents said yes, citing the former president's "agenda for peace" and "more social programs for those in need." Others talked about the "Clinton nightmare," like the man who called Clinton a "womanizing, Elvis-loving, non-inhaling, truth-shading, abortion-protecting, gay-promoting, war-protesting, gun-hating baby boomer."

Clinton divided the country politically. So did Bush. Who do people think divided it more? The answer is Bush, by a big margin -- 59 to 27 percent. The public sees President Bush the same way they once saw President Clinton -- as a divider, not a uniter.

---End of Transmission---

9 comments:

Jeremy said...

First of all...when I see Clinton speak today...in ANY forum, I immediately stop and listen. I didn't do that so much when he was president, but it took a bumbling moron like Bush to provide such a sharp contrast.

I remember in the days after 9/11, when Clinton was on tv giving an interview...I wanted to cry. I wanted to reach into the TV and say, BILL, COME BACK! HELP US, WE'RE TOTALLY FUCKED!

Clinton's intelligence, his affluence, his ability to speak in sophisticated terms with amazing ideas and clarity, his TOTAL understanding of any issue at hand, his thoughtfulness...all of that is gone.

Tom said...

James,

I LOVE the Clintons, agree with the fuzzy sense of the poll and agree with Jeremy. But the details of the poll kind of bug me.

The 1990s were boom years -- BUT that was in significant part because of the Tech bubble. What Clinton did right is he stored up the benefits from the boom -- but, in large part because of the Lewinski dustup, he didn't tackle many of America's entrenched problems. Gore might have moved foreward from where we were and fixed Global Warming, the Boomers retiring, Medicare, public health, immigration, fair trade and on and on. But instead we got Bush and catastrophe.

But, in truth, the Clinton Boom was a bubble, so we shouldn't give him too much credit for the 90s. And now we must regret his failure to fully utilize the good fortune of his time.

As for national security, the people don't seem to understand that Bush wasted his first 8 months in office neglecting al Queda and the homefront. Bush is a disaster on national security as much as anything! Look at FEMA! Look at his manipulation of intelligence! It is weird to me that people think Bush looks after the country. He doesn't!!

I also disagree with the CNN text that "Clinton divided the country." When did he do that!? He was attacked endlessly, but people forget he and Hillary were exonerated on Whitewater and on everything but the Lewinski deal.

The Republicans were "successful" at hate mongering in the 90s, a skill they continue to practice.

james said...

Jeremy:

I agree. I think he is THE "Great Communicator"--much more so then Reagan. He draws crowds where ever he goes because he is so gifted in speaking well and knowing so much about everything. He is a true diplomat.

Tom:

I agree that Clinton could have done more and ensured Gore would have been elected by avoiding the Lewinski affair.

And I also agree with the following when you wrote this:

"As for national security, the people don't seem to understand that Bush wasted his first 8 months in office neglecting al Queda and the homefront."

Neo-cons constantly try and blame Clinton for not doing anything to get bin laden and al-qaeda. However, at least Clinton launched missiles at OBL.

GWB (as you pointed out) didn't do a DAMN THING until we were attacked. 8 months is nearly a year and that is A LOT OF TIME to get some things done on the al-Qaeda front.

Underground Logician said...

I'm sure there was an eight month span, perhaps several of them during Clinton's eight years where Bill was doing other things. Remember, the first WTC attack which amounted to what from Clinton? Hmmm? This is over-the-top idiotic.

PTCruiser said...

Man, I sure do miss Bill Clinton now.

james said...

PT:

Even my Republican parents who hated Clinton at the time have come around to him and see him as a great President. I think a lot of people have come around since the reign of the W.

Anonymous said...

Underground Logician said...
I'm sure there was an eight month span, perhaps several of them during Clinton's eight years where Bill was doing other things. Remember, the first WTC attack which amounted to what from Clinton? Hmmm? This is over-the-top idiotic.


Underground,

Clinton was inaugurated in January 20th of 1993. The first World Trade Center bombing happened a month later. Hardly the same as Bush, who was in office 8 MONTHS when 9/11 happened, and his National Security advisor, C. Rice, gave him a presidential daily briefing telling him that Al Qaeda wanted to hijack planes and fly them into buildings.

A bit different.

Tommy Gnosis said...

Remember, the first WTC attack which amounted to what from Clinton? Hmmm? This is over-the-top idiotic.

Seems to me that they found the guys responsible, arrested them, and they are now rotting in prison for the rest of their lives.

That's not a very good comparison, now is it? Would you like to play again?

Tommy Gnosis said...

Oh, I should also have mentioned that they were also tried under the rules and standards of US Constitutional law and then put in prison, as opposed to say, arrested and left uncharged under murky circumstances in an offshore military brig.