“The president’s ratings plummet” is a phrase lifted from a quote by Charlie Cook in describing the usual path of post-election favorability ratings of a president in front of a huge loss in the off year election that follows.  It’s part of a post by Brendan Nyhan.

This month’s, Obama’s rating have ranged from 50% (at the beginning of the month to 58% (with the latest poll at 56%).  Even if that’s more than a 10% decline form its peak, is it really fair to suggest that Obama’s ratings are “plummeting”?  Falling, sure, but in the last month they haven’t even been doing that. At worst, they’re stabilizing.

But that doesn’t make for good press, does it?  I wonder if his ratings hit 60% we’ll hear of his “skyrocketing” poll numbers?

P.S.  If you ever wondered what “right track/wrong track” really measures, here’s something I stumbled across while looking at the numbers above:

  • Right track number was 43% in June 2001.
  • Right track number jumped to 72% in September 2001 and stayed there for three after the 9/11 attacks.
  • Right track number was 36% in January 2003.
  • Right track number jumped to 62% in April 2003, a month after we invaded Iraq.

Just wondering, what was so right track about 9/11 and the Iraq War?

Posted in: Polls.
Last Modified: September 28, 2009