And we don’t care

As with LewisnkyGate and TravelGate and SoxGate and FastAndFuriousGate before it, the public doesn’t give a fuck about IRSGate and BenghaziGate and APGate:

According to the survey, which was conducted Friday and Saturday, 53% of Americans say they approve of the job the president is doing, with 45% saying they disapprove. The president’s approval rating was at 51% in CNN’s last poll, which was conducted in early April.

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144 replies
  1. 1
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    Outrage fatigue?

  2. 2
    c u n d gulag says:

    When the Republicans, and their butt-buddies in the MSM, try to add the suffix, “gate,” to everything a Democratic President does, except maybe his bowel movements, the pubic has learned to ignore them.

    I guess they never heard the story of, “The Boy Who Cried, ‘Wolf-gate!!!'”

  3. 3
    gene108 says:

    Why would people reject Obama and giver up their free Obama-phones, Obama-lunches, Obama-homes and Obama-cars?

    Bribing people to support you doesn’t mean they really support what you’re doing. Once the free goodies run out, look for Obama’s popularity to tank.

  4. 4
    BillinGlendaleCA says:

    When the Republicans, and their butt-buddies in the MSM, try to add the suffix, “gate,” to everything a Democratic President does, except maybe his bowel movements

    I’m sure that fart-gate is right around the corner.

  5. 5

    Attaching gate to every scandal, real or faux is just lazy. Unless you are a viewer of Fox News Watergate is like ancient history.

  6. 6
    Ruckus says:

    @gene108:
    Where do we go to get all this free stuff? I haven’t seen any of it. Not one little bit. I WANT MY FREE STUFF.

    Where?

  7. 7
    Bobby Thomson says:

    @c u n d gulag:

    When the Republicans, and their butt-buddies in the MSM, try to add the suffix, “gate,” to everything a Democratic President does, except maybe his bowel movements, the pubic has learned to ignore them.

    Not that “the public” don’t focus on silly things, but these are also very silly attempts at scandal, independent of anything that has gone before them.

  8. 8
    Elizabelle says:

    i think the msm’s credibility is tanking.

    maybe people got that there’s ‘no there there’ despite the msm being in scandal mode?

  9. 9
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    The one scandal that will never be proclaimed is the media’s deep involvement in Toolgate.

  10. 10
    c u n d gulag says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:
    Actually, I suffered from that myself during the W years – and tears.

    By the time we found out about some catastrophic f*ck-up – or purposeful fuster-cluck – or other, they were off f*cking-up and purposely fuster-clucking something else.

    Those were the longest 8 years of my life – and the Reagan/Bush “The Not Totally Stupid” I, were not exactly too short, either.

    When will the people in this country learn not to blame Democratic administrations for not fixing up the f*ck-up’s and purposeful fuster-clucks of the Republican administrations that preceded them, fast enough?

    And, then, on top of that, watch the Republicans and their butt-buddies in the MSM, add “gate” to everything that doesn’t go smoothly?

  11. 11
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: It’s in the process of becoming one of those things that virtually no one connects to its precise original meaning anymore, like “bully pulpit”. People will be Googling (or whatever Googling is called by then) in the future to find out “Why is a scandal referred to as a “gate”?

    Which will go something like this, or I hope anyway.

  12. 12
    PeakVT says:

    As with LewisnkyGate and TravelGate and SoxGate and FastAndFuriousGate before it

    Let’s not pretend the scandal-mongering can’t have any effect, though. I can’t prove it, but I’m sure the constant FUD spewed by the VRWNM pulled votes away from Gore – both directly, and indirectly by helping Nader. And even if it doesn’t make much of a difference to particular races, it certainly sucks up the oxygen in the media. Heard much about the jobs crisis or unemployment lately from the MSM? That’s what we should be talking about, but the MSM sets the agenda, like it or not.

  13. 13
    BGinCHI says:

    Shorter GOP congress asshats: We’re sorry we ate your chocolate squirrels.

  14. 14
    HinTN says:

    @Ruckus: You are obviously not poor and blah enough to git it.

  15. 15
    Tripod says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    According to the Gallup tracker, they were taking skin off him mid-week, then they started jabbering about asparagus and that oh so stupid umbrella story. His approval numbers bounced right back up.

  16. 16

    @PeakVT: They used to set the agenda, they don’t any longer. Their clout is decreasing. Obama’s election and re-election proved that. In 2008 the MSM had all but anointed Hillary before the primaries began.

  17. 17
    gene108 says:

    @PeakVT:

    I think the 1990’s scandals really shifted the balance of power in the South and West, where Democrats were doing a balancing act between appealing to voters and making sure the most liberal stances of the national party weren’t attributed to them.

    The 1990’s scandals really made it hard for Democrats in red states to run, because not only did they have to distance themselves from the liberal policies of Democrats, but they had to distance themselves from an otherwise popular President Clinton, who was vilified from being the most corrupt President ever.

  18. 18
    dmsilev says:

    Skewed Polls!

  19. 19
    Ruckus says:

    @HinTN:
    I was certainly poor enough last year, although pasty white at the time.

  20. 20
    👽 Martin says:

    Farther down in the poll, no doubt it is revealed that 27% of registered voters find the president to be uppity.

    Oh, and a fun wingnut exercise (something I got to do last night) I was accosted by someone I just met over the issue of how college admissions is unfair to hard working students – that the process should focus more on achievement than on overcoming adversity and such things (apparently those are unrelated notions – overcoming hardship requires no effort at all in their world). So I pointed out that asian students were doing very well in spite of often coming from adverse socioeconomic situations, they were clearly out-testing all other groups. “Well, if you force your kid to study for the SAT like some kind of slave!” Wingnuts always respond like that – it’s an almost infallible trap for them. “So, you don’t think that minorities work hard enough, and you think asians work too hard. I’m guessing the white kids all work just the right amount. So it’s only supposed to be a meritocracy for the white kids? And Republicans wonder why they’re called racists…”

    I don’t make many friends.

  21. 21
    Pokeyblow says:

    The public was against impeaching Clinton too, but that didn’t stop the Party of Stupid from doing just that. And the public wants gun control.

    Doesn’t mean everything will be swell.

  22. 22
    raven says:

    @Pokeyblow: And it doesn’t mean it won’t either.

  23. 23
    👽 Martin says:

    @gene108:

    The 1990′s scandals really made it hard for Democrats in red states to run, because not only did they have to distance themselves from the liberal policies of Democrats, but they had to distance themselves from an otherwise popular President Clinton, who was vilified from being the most corrupt President ever.

    Yeah, how’d that work out for them? Lot of Democrats now coming from those states?

    Recognizing a battle is lost is very liberating. You might as well be true to yourself if you’re fucked if you do and fucked if you don’t. Politicians are universally bad at recognizing when they’re part of a lost cause.

  24. 24
    West of the Rockies says:

    But, but, but… the mainstream media (including NPR) is assuring us that things are really, really bad for Obama!

    The idea that we have a “left-wing” media is ludicrous.

  25. 25
    PsiFighter37 says:

    Oh come on, Doug – once the American public actually gets informed on the issues, they’ll come around to disapproving.

    It does really prove that this is just a tempest in a teapot. The IRS hearings just proved that it’s a huge nothingburger, but that won’t stop Republicans from wildly ejaculating hysteria all over the Washington media until their dicks are rubbed raw.

  26. 26
    PeakVT says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: Setting the agenda != controlling electoral outcomes. Setting the agenda means the MSM generally controls the issues being discussed by choosing what subjects to cover. Its not necessarily a grand conspiracy, but a reflection of class bias, editor and publisher preferences, the relentless hunt for eyeballs, individual reporter ignorance, and probably other factors.

  27. 27
    Peter says:

    Let’s talk about stupid, Jim. I’m going to put this in a way that even someone like you can understand. You remember the story of the little boy who cried wolf? In case you forgot, he was a little boy who cried for help because he said there was a wolf after him. Each time, the people of the village came running, and each time, there was no wolf. Eventually they got really tired of it. So when he cries for help because there’s a real wolf after him? Nobody takes him seriously. Nobody comes, because nobody cares. Do you see where I’m going with this, Jim?

    Listen. What we have here, Jim, is a shitwolf. Do you know what a shitwolf is? You never seem to have that crucial little thing called evidence. But each time you cry shitwolf, and each time I come running. No more, Jim. Never again.

    Now, I want you to tell me what the moral of the story is. Say it, Jim. Say it.

    “Never cry shitwolf.” Like so many other things, Trailer Park Boys have all the answers.

  28. 28
    NonyNony says:

    @PeakVT:

    Let’s not pretend the scandal-mongering can’t have any effect, though. I can’t prove it, but I’m sure the constant FUD spewed by the VRWNM pulled votes away from Gore

    I’m positive that this is the case because the constant scandal-mongering among the Villagers convinced Gore and his political advisers that they needed to distance themselves from Clinton to the point that they selected Joe “Shame on you Bill Clinton” Lieberman as his running mate specifically to show that he wasn’t on board with Clinton.

    The difference between then and now is that 1) we have the Internet and so that political advisers have no excuse for being so insular and stupid in how they’re advising candidates and 2) the person who will most likely have the most to lose by this strategy is Joe Freaking Biden, who, if I could pick a Democrat that was the most opposite Al Gore in terms of personality and decision making, I doubt I could come up with a better one.

    The Republicans are running the 90s playbook because in their eyes it was a winning strategy. It really wasn’t – it depended on Gore being kind of ignorant of how the Clinton scandals were playing out in the rest of the country and even then Bush got incredibly lucky in a few states and lost the popular vote. That isn’t something that is going to work twice. In fact, if they impeach Obama I suspect there will be diminishing returns this time around.

  29. 29
    Ultraviolet Thunder says:

    People generally like the president and don’t care about the ‘scandals’. But they’re being told over and over that the scandals are big and scandalous and the president is in trouble. Because that makes good headlines for the media. So we have an electorate that’s mostly sick of these nothingburgers but thinks everyone else is gobbling them up.

  30. 30
    Keith G says:

    So, why is this the 100th post over this and other related topics?

  31. 31
    jeffreyw says:

    This -gate has rusty hinges. They squeal when opened and TeaTardTears make poor lube.

  32. 32
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @Keith G:
    The answer is 42.

  33. 33
    cleek says:

    OT, but this is epic.

  34. 34
    gene108 says:

    @👽 Martin:

    Lot of Democrats now coming from those states?

    If Democrats want to maintain control of the House and the Presidency, let alone the Senate, they need to be able to have some representatives viable in those states.

    Alabama had a Democratic governor to start the 21st century, which the Bush & Co. Justice Department went out of their way to investigate and indict. South Carolina had a Democratic Senator in the 1990’s. Georgia had Max Cleland as a Senator until 2002.

    As much as it may seem the GOP is on the decline, they have enough of a hold in enough states to be dangerous both locally and nationally.

    As much as the electoral map favors a Democratic Presidential candidate, the Republicans are essentially looking at the same electoral map Bush & Co. looked at in 2000 and 2004, i.e. the right circumstances can get a Republican elected President.

    If you really want the politics to change in this country, the GOP has to be beaten again, and again and again in elections, until they have no choice but to change.

    Right now, with their stranglehold on Southern politics, they really don’t have much reason to change, because someone like Chris Christie* could win the White House in 2016 because Republicans have a safe base of states to operate from.

    *I live in NJ. Republicans will fall in line behind the most electable national candidate out there, once their clown show of a primary runs its course and Christie may well be the most electable candidate they have. He already has Reagan’s coating of Teflon, because none of his shit sticks to him. The media has so much fun yucking it up with his “wit”, they ignore the lack of any serious accomplishments he’s had while governor. All people will hear is “Republican governor in a blue state” and he’s every bit as right-wing on social issues as Hucklebee, Santorum, et. al. His inner wing-nut is kept in check by the Democratic legislature, making him seem that much more palatable to voters.

  35. 35
    Keith G says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: A good thing?

  36. 36
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @Keith G:
    Just inevitable.

  37. 37
    Yatsuno says:

    @cleek: Not reading the 435 comments, most of which I am sure denigrate TBogg for insufficient purity.

  38. 38
    J. says:

    And what’s Congress’s approval rating? (Is there such a thing as a negative rating?)

    What I don’t get is why Obama hasn’t hired better PR people.

  39. 39
    Hill Dweller says:

    Let’s not forget the MSM, when it looked like Obama was in trouble last weekend, openly stating the Village hates him and were going to make him pay.

    The Village is full of thin-skinned sociopaths, who are in constant need of coddling and validation. Obama’s lack of respect for them engenders a level of rage I’ve never seen, which is telling.

  40. 40
    Anya says:

    @cleek: TBogg is gay? I am as bad as google at predicting gender, sexual orientation and age.

  41. 41
    pokeyblow says:

    The public didn’t want Clinton impeached either. And the public does want gun control.

    Politicians, especially those in the Party of Stupid, don’t give a shit what people want.

  42. 42
    Chris says:

    @👽 Martin:

    I don’t make many friends.

    You don’t need these kinds of friends.

  43. 43
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @pokeyblow:

    Politicians, especially those in the Party of Stupid, don’t give a shit what people want.

    They give a shit about what the right people want.

  44. 44
    Baud says:

    @Anya:

    I’m the same. It’s a miracle I haven’t had more awkward situations in my life.

  45. 45
    Josie says:

    @Yatsuno: I looked at the comments earlier when it was around 200, and they seemed to be pretty evenly divided. I am not, however, inclined to read the last 200. At some point, it has all pretty much been said.

  46. 46
    Yatsuno says:

    @Anya:

    TBogg is gay?

    That would be quite the shock to Mrs TBogg.

  47. 47
    Chris says:

    @NonyNony:

    The Republicans are running the 90s playbook because in their eyes it was a winning strategy. It really wasn’t – it depended on Gore being kind of ignorant of how the Clinton scandals were playing out in the rest of the country and even then Bush got incredibly lucky in a few states and lost the popular vote.

    Country was also a lot whiter then. As I understand it, a lot of Clinton’s campaign and the way he presented himself (what the Washington establishment considered “white trash”) was aimed at winning back the “Reagan Democrats,” the white working class and middle class men who’d once been the backbone of the Democratic coalition but had been defecting to Republicans in droves for thirty years. The country is less white now than it was even fifteen years ago, and these people are no longer the balance of power, so Republican dog whistles don’t work on as many people.

  48. 48
    MattR says:

    @Yatsuno:

    I deleted my comment deleted because I am heading out soon and don’t want to get into a serious debate now. Should not have responded in the first place.

    Hope everyone has a wonderful finish to their weekend.

  49. 49
    Chickamin Slam says:

    Most people don’t care about politicians having consensual sex or Obama selling guns in a program that someone before him started. Most people want living wage jobs. Most people want a safe and secure future. People care about those things!

  50. 50
    WereBear says:

    I would also like to think that it is because they are seen as not really scandals.

    They can’t explain why the public is supposed to be so outraged (Benghazi) or that the President was behind it (IRS) or it’s on-the-face-of-it stupid (Umbrellas.) Do not underestimate how much power the MSM had back when everyone grew up with Walter Cronkite telling them the way it was. That kind of power and trust takes a while to bleed out.

    And now, I think, it has. People who grew up with “Air is dangerous, film at eleven!” just don’t fall for it like they used to. It sucks that our traditional source of news is dying off, but it’s a self-inflicted wound.

  51. 51
    Anya says:

    @Yatsuno: Okay, so I am I misreading this:

    Obviously I don’t speak for the gay community, but I’d find it highly disrespectful that some people would try and use my movement as a delivery device for their message. In other words; don’t piss on my leg and call it a rainbow.

  52. 52
    MikeJ says:

    @Bill E Pilgrim:

    People will be Googling (or whatever Googling is called by then) in the future to find out “Why is a scandal referred to as a “gate”?

    I once rode the 180 mile length of the C&O from Cumberland, MD to DC. It pretty much ends right at the original gate that held the water back, the namesake of the Watergate Complex. Which I thought was pretty cool.

  53. 53
    Anya says:

    @Baud: I worked with a woman for two years and it was a shock to me to discover that she was a lesbian. Everyone at the office was like, “how can you not tell”? I don’t believe there’s such a thing as a gaydar.

  54. 54
    CarolDuhart2 says:

    @WereBear: It’s the constant stream of “scandals”. Even the most corrupt Administration possible cannot possibly have a scandal every day and every hour. It’s one thing if something comes out once a year, but every day? Folks tune out on that after awhile and will only sit up and take notice if its really, really bad or really, really big.

  55. 55

    standard winger rebuttal is: Nixon’s approval went up initially when watergate came about.

  56. 56
    nineone says:

    the public doesn’t give a fuck about IRSGate and BenghaziGate and APGate:

    We should give a fuck about shoddy bullshit that can’t last a week?

  57. 57
    gene108 says:

    @Chris:

    a lot of Clinton’s campaign and the way he presented himself (what the Washington establishment considered “white trash”) was aimed at winning back the “Reagan Democrats,” the white working class and middle class men who’d once been the backbone of the Democratic coalition

    If Clinton could’ve handled the first year better and/or not run into too much, then unprecedented, opposition from Republicans he might’ve been able to win voters back.

    Voters were very disaffected by 1992, which is one reason Perot did so well. He was different and voters were frustrated with both parties.

    Turn out was generally going down post-Watergate.

    Despite the whiter demographics, you also had a lot more people, who had either lived through or had parents who lived through the Great Depression and survived because of “responsible” government programs and really did want to “go back” to government doing something for them again.

    Clinton had a shot at really busting the Reagan-Republican coalition, if he could’ve shaken the “slick Willie”, “draft dodger”, etc. labels that got stuck to him in the 1992 campaign, with something effective that made a difference for most people, addressed their fears of an out of touch government, and avoid any major scandals that plagued the previous Republican Administrations.

    It didn’t help Clinton’s already shaky standing on defense (draft dodger reputation) matters that he tried to push through something like the military allowing gays to serve openly, within the first few months of his Administration, which met with incredible opposition from the generals in charge (*cough* Collin Powell *cough*), though he did get the much maligned compromise of DADT through, which at least gave some little bit of legal cover for gays to serve in the military, when they didn’t have any before.

    He tried with healthcare reform to craft a policy to win back formerly Democratic voters and that backfired on him because of both Republican/industry opposition and handing off of creating his proposal to his wife and what seemed to be a bunch of brokered backroom deals that soured the public on it.

    There was a huge missed opportunity, in my opinion, during the Clinton years to really change the political narrative of how people relate to the government. As gifted a politician as Clinton is for climbing the ladder and surviving, he just didn’t have whatever it takes to really be a transformative President.

  58. 58
    AHH onna Droid says:

    @cleek: Damn, complete with threats to ban and overnight tit for tat. Nice.

    I am also bewildered by straight people defending (?) me by bullying the Manning supporters. I stopped going to big city pride a decade ago, fwiw. (I am not a hipster, either, dammit!) Also, the notion that epic event wank is a new development in the glbtq community makes me smile. Millennium March, anyone? Lol.

  59. 59
    jl says:

    @Tripod:

    ” they were taking skin off him mid-week, then they started jabbering about asparagus and that oh so stupid umbrella story. His approval numbers bounced right back up. ”

    Not sure it was Congressioanal ramblings about asparagus, or umbrella outrage that did it.
    Facts also hit the news that one of the scandals was fake trumped up BS by GOP, and there wasn’t anything there as far as law breaking by WH in other two, or even if any laws were broken at all.

    I am concerned about IRS targeting groups merely because of their political affiliation, and I don’t like the way the government can conduct surveillance and investigations post Patriot Act. But a real WH scandal is no where in sight on those two.

  60. 60
    Baud says:

    @jl:

    I completely missed the asparagus scandal, although I’ve seen references to it here. Explain please.

  61. 61
    grandpajohn says:

    The one scandal that will never be proclaimed is the media’s deep involvement in Toolgate.

    yes, this, a thousand times this, our descent into third world status will be attributial as much to our media as to any other thing including the insanity of the republicans

  62. 62
    AHH onna Droid says:

    @CarolDuhart2: Ah, but Carol, the scandal that our President is a n*, his the First Lady is a n*, that he moved his n* mother in law and two p*n*s into the White House, and his mom was a n*love never ends. The myth of White supremacy, also known as America, is dead. /sheethead

  63. 63
    Maude says:

    Issa got a letter in 2012 from Treasury about the investigation into the IRS.
    McConnell, Paul and Portman are saying there’s intimidation at the WH about the IRS scandal.
    The GOP is desperate..

  64. 64
    jl says:

    @Baud: Gohmert went on some rant during the hearings that was so deranged and senseless the other “Benghazi!” GOPers tried to shut him up, and asparagus played a role in aforesaid rant.

  65. 65
    grandpajohn says:

    @c u n d gulag:

    When will the people in this country learn not to blame Democratic administrations for not fixing up the f*ck-up’s and purposeful fuster-clucks of the Republican administrations that preceded them, fast enough?

    That requires the ability to have an attention span of greater than 30 minutes

  66. 66
    gene108 says:

    @Baud:

    Gohmert got flustered in the back and forth with Holder and the committee chair and accused the AG of “trying to cast aspersions on my asparagus.”

    http://www.rawstory.com/rs/201.....asparagus/

  67. 67
    Richard says:

    @c u n d gulag:

    The boys who cried to Wolf Blitzer.

  68. 68
    Yatsuno says:

    @CarolDuhart2:

    Even the most corrupt Administration possible cannot possibly have a scandal every day and every hour. It’s one thing if something comes out once a year, but every day?

    It’s because they can’t say what the real scandal is for the Repubs: the sheriff is a Ni-CLANG!! and worse that boy doesn’t know his place. And not being able to say it is literally killing them.

  69. 69
    AHH onna Droid says:

    @Hill Dweller: Technically, you are describing narcissistic personality disorder and the supply/rage cycle.

    Sociopaths just hate everyone all the time but learn to hide that fact or suffer the consequences.

  70. 70
    jl says:

    To amplify on the AP ‘scandal’, I think that the Patriot Act was passed and signed into law, and apparently the SCOTUS has said, or is likely to hold that, most of it is Constitutional is a very serious political and Constitutional scandal of our time.

    That most people in the U.S. seem to be OK with it is a scandal.

    But if the AP thing is administration doing investigations the way it can in the post-911 scandal (edit: meant ‘climate’ but a little Freudian slip there), that is not going to be real scandal in most peoples’ minds. And I have to admit, as much as I dislike what has happened in terms of civil rights and privacy, the administration doing what it can do under the law is not a big scandal with me. Though if Obama keeps setting precedents that normalize it, I don;t like that at all.

  71. 71
    grandpajohn says:

    @👽 Martin: I somehow doubt that lack of friendship with people with those kind of thinking processes keeps you awake at night

  72. 72
    dmsilev says:

    @gene108: Gohmert is such a barbarian. Everyone knows that you only serve aspersions with broccoli.

  73. 73
    IowaOldLady says:

    @gene108: I saw a bit of that tape about aspersions on his asparagus, probably on Daily Show, and I wondered if he misspoke. Or is asparagus some kind of super sikrit code? WTF?

  74. 74
    Chris says:

    @gene108:

    Voters were very disaffected by 1992, which is one reason Perot did so well. He was different and voters were frustrated with both parties.

    Was that really all it was about? I’ve never understood the Perot campaign, because it never seemed to have a coherent ideology like the Dixiecrats, Bull Moose or Know-Nothings did. Did he really only get fifteen percent of the vote just because people were pissed off at both parties? If so, wow. It casts an interesting light on the Age of Reagan to know that it ended with that kind of disillusionment.

  75. 75
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Richard: nice

    @Maude: Charlie Cook is trying to help them find a way forward

    Republicans would be much wiser to pursue a third option: Dig up as much damaging information as they can about the Obama administration and leak it to reporters they know will write tough stories that won’t be traced back to the source. That way, the public won’t see the GOP as being obsessed with attacking the other side and playing gotcha at the expense of the big issues facing the country—the ones voters really care about.
    Meanwhile, everyone in Washington will watch polls for signs of blood in the water, indications that the controversies or scandals—depending upon your perspective—are taking a political toll on Obama’s job-approval numbers.

    I expect this is what we’re going to be hearing all summer. Republicans: “Can the president prove he didn’t know about the IRS activities? Can the administration prove there isn’t more targeting going on?” MSM: “Republicans continue to raise questions…”

  76. 76
    Suffern ACE says:

    @cleek: hmm. OT comment to OT comment, but shouldn’t grand marshalls for parades come the population of people who can attend the parade?

  77. 77
    Patricia Kayden says:

    Yay to that poll! I recall during the Clinton era that his approval went up during the “scandals” that the media/GOP ginned up as well. People aren’t idiots.

    When will the Repubs start doing their jobs — i.e., focusing on job creation, immigration reform, gun control, etc.?

  78. 78
    Ruckus says:

    @Chris:
    It’s OK, those kinds of people are never really friends anyway.

  79. 79
    jl says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Yeah, I guess that will work, after the GOP burned the press so bad that even a guy like Major Garrett had to call BS in public.

    And, oh yeah, did Cook maybe mention anything about the actual existence of an actual real scandal would perhaps be helpful?

    There is information about every administration is ‘damaging’ or can be packaged to appear so. The public will tire of that quicker than of the Clinton-gates, since, so far, there is even less reality to them.

  80. 80
    Maude says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:
    The main problem the GOP and the MSM have is that Washington doesn’t work they way it has in the past. It’s has changed because of the internet.
    People aren’t fooled as easily as the MSM thinks.
    Obama just isn’t a scandal type person.
    This is falling flat.

  81. 81
    Keith says:

    That’s what happens when you try to make anything and everything a scandal. Hell, I had a co-worker telling me *2 years* ago that Obama should be impeached. I go, “For WHAT?!?”, and the response was “For not following the Constitution”. They shot their wad on this stuff.

  82. 82
    Ruckus says:

    @Anya:
    Of course there is such a thing as gaydar. Of course for most people it doesn’t work very well so they make a lot of mistakes. I turned mine off a few years ago when I realized that it doesn’t or at least it shouldn’t make any difference. It’s so much easier now that I don’t have to try to figure out something that is none of my business.

  83. 83
    Baud says:

    @gene108: @jl:

    Thanks.

  84. 84
    gene108 says:

    @Chris:

    fifteen percent of the vote

    19% of the vote is what Perot pulled in, though he didn’t win any states. At some points in the election, the polls were showing it as a three way tie between Clinton, Bush, Sr. and Perot.

    I’m post Watergate in age, but from the old folks who educated me, it seems Watergate (and Vietnam) really left a big bad ugly scar on the American psyche, which got transmitted down to my generation, though we didn’t live through it.

    If so, wow. It casts an interesting light on the Age of Reagan to know that it ended with that kind of disillusionment.

    A lot of the disillusionment came from Watergate and lingered for longer than people care to remember or admit.

  85. 85
    gogol's wife says:

    @IowaOldLady:

    Whatever caused it, it has become part of my daily lexicon. I’m constantly accusing my husband of casting aspersions on my asparagus. I love it!

  86. 86
    gogol's wife says:

    @Chris:

    I just remember Perot as one of those “new shiny objects” things. People hadn’t seen so many of these blowhard businessmen who claim they can fix the gummint but actually can’t do anything, so he fooled some of the people for some of the time. The best thing that came out of it was Dana Carvey’s impression.

  87. 87
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @Patricia Kayden:

    When will the Repubs start doing their jobs — i.e., focusing on job creation, immigration reform, gun control, etc.?

    They are doing their jobs by ensuring that those things are never effectively addressed.

  88. 88
    grandpajohn says:

    @Chris: Gore made his first mistake when he selected Leiberman and went downhill from there in an election that should not have been close enough for the bushies to steal.

  89. 89
    Ruckus says:

    @gene108:
    I’m one of those old enough and I’d say you got it spot on.

  90. 90
    jl says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: And if the Congressional GOP really got that job done it wanted, its approval ratings would flatline near zero, and party registration would drop even more.

  91. 91
    MikeJ says:

    @jl:

    And if the Congressional GOP really got that job done it wanted, its approval ratings would flatline near zero, and party registration would drop even more.

    They’d have the economic system they wanted and nobody would be allowed to vote.

  92. 92
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @grandpajohn:

    Completely turning your back on a president who left office with a 66% approval rating was a stroke of genius. Gore didn’t just lose, he fucking threw the election.

  93. 93
    gogol's wife says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    Lieberman was such a stupid mistake, too. Remember his “debate” with Cheney?

  94. 94
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @gene108: it seems Watergate (and Vietnam) really left a big bad ugly scar on the American psyche,

    I think Perlstein said in Nixonland that Nixon made Reagan possible, i.e. poisoned people’s attitude toward gov’t so that Reagan could run against government, and I think that’s what Obama meant when he said Reagan changed the way the country thinks, that so many PUMAs and Naderites try to turn into Obama being a Reagan apologist. And that’s what the McConnell strategy is, and essentially what Charlie Cook (just a numbers analyst, don’t you know, totally neutral) is recommending: Throw wrenches in the works, and then campaign on the idea that “government” is the problem.

  95. 95
    grandpajohn says:

    Most people want living wage jobs. Most people want a safe and secure future. People care about those things!

    Speaking of scandals, wonder why the MSM seems to have forgotten that despite the repubs campaigning on job creation in 2010, they have yet to introduce a single bill to create jobs but have voted 37 times to kill ACA

  96. 96
    WereBear says:

    @gogol’s wife: People hadn’t seen so many of these blowhard businessmen who claim they can fix the gummint but actually can’t do anything, so he fooled some of the people for some of the time.

    I think some of it was that he flat out had a lot of money and didn’t try to hide it (as other Presidential candidates often do.) Heck, his offered expertise was that he made a lot of money. Some people find that impressive, despite what anyone might have done to get it.

  97. 97
    Ruckus says:

    @grandpajohn:
    And I agree with this as well.
    Not choosing a good running mate or reasonable people to run your campaign is a sign that you really will not be a good president as that is a huge part of the job. It certainly is not the only thing but it is huge. I didn’t like Hillary for this reason alone, her campaign was terrible because of who ran it. She did well in spite of that.

  98. 98
    PeakVT says:

    @Chris: In 1992 voters were trying to come to terms with the huge budget deficits of Reagan, declining union jobs in traditional big industries (steel, autos, tires, etc.), and other economic dislocations. They obvious blamed Reagan and Bush for the deficits, but didn’t trust “tax and spend” Democrats because Republicans had successfully tarred them with the label. Perot exploited deficit scare-mongering and the cult of the CEO to take a large chunk of voters.

  99. 99
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @gogol’s wife:
    I’m trying to forget.

  100. 100
    MikeJ says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    and essentially what Charlie Cook (just a numbers analyst, don’t you know, totally neutral) is recommending:

    Cook wasn’t saying it would be good for the country, he’s saying it would be good tactics for the Republicans. And it would. I don’t see any approval of it in what he says.

  101. 101
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @gogol’s wife:

    Addendum: Choosing a VP whose face you couldn’t punch just once is a colossal error of judgement and indicative of a lack of understanding the electorate. That latter became more and more apparent as Gore’s campaign slouched on.

  102. 102
    scav says:

    Query. Has anyone offered up the meta-term Revolving-gate or something of the ilk yet?

  103. 103
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @scav:
    I proffered “Toolgate” earlier in the day. Don’t know how meta it is though.

  104. 104
    Ruckus says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:
    Never heard of Joe referred to as a politician “whose face you couldn’t punch just once” but it is spot on.

  105. 105
    JD Rhoades says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    Outrage fatigue?

    Someone else called the Rethuglicans “The Party That Cried Kenyan.” That’s perfect.

  106. 106
    scav says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: Saw that, thought it was an apt description for certain of the media figures’ on-going roles, but you’re right, I was aiming a bit more meta — certainly meta enough to rope in the GOP-business figures collusion as well.

  107. 107
    belieber says:

    Do you people really need a poll to tell you this? Seriously?

  108. 108
    BillinGlendaleCA says:

    @grandpajohn: In the republican mind, killing ACA is a jobs bill.

  109. 109
    MikeJ says:

    @JD Rhoades:

    Someone else called the Rethuglicans “The Party That Cried Kenyan.”

    Except for the fact that in “The Boy Who Cried Wolf”, there really was a wolf at the end. There’s no reason to believe there will ever be an actual scandal from Obama.

  110. 110
    James E. Powell says:

    @gene108:

    As gifted a politician as Clinton is for climbing the ladder and surviving, he just didn’t have whatever it takes to really be a transformative President.

    Which raises the question, did Clinton want to be a transformative president? Every candidate talks about transformation, some about boldly going into the future, some about getting back to the imagined days of greatness, most do both.

    I always had the impression that Clinton wanted to be president and wanted to be popular, and he was pretty good at doing both of those. But transformation? To what? I never thought he had what Bush pere called “the vision thing.”

  111. 111
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @James E. Powell:

    Clinton was more regurgitative than transformational. DOMA, NAFTA and the CFMA were all GOP darlings that Clinton signed into law.

  112. 112
    WereBear says:

    @James E. Powell: He had a ton of things he wanted to get done. But he hadn’t figured out how to get them past the Republicans, who had also ramped up to a new level of craaazeee that no one had anticipated.

    He was no saint, obviously. But he seemed to be a true believer in the New Deal etc. He just didn’t have a chance.

  113. 113
    IowaOldLady says:

    I was angry at Clinton as I watched W because IMHO if Clilnton had kept it in his pants, Gore would be president and we would have avoided a lot of pain. But as the 2008 campaign heated up, he appeared on some show I was watching and I was stunned by the novelty of an articulate, intelligent president. I remembered why I voted for him.

  114. 114
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @James E. Powell: I’m the farthest thing from a Clinton worshipper, but I think he was sincere about a lot of things. He genuinely wanted health care reform to be the first thing he did, and who knows how things might have been different if he had succeeded.

  115. 115
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @PeakVT: Pretty much this. He was running as Mr. Economic Fix-it, seeking to fix both The Deficit (government spending gone amok) and The Economy (lost blue-collar jobs). It played well for a while because, as is still the case, people get very confused about the difference between the deficit and the economy. Of course that confusion helped Clinton a lot too, because he both eliminated the deficit and presided over the expansion of the economy, which were and still are seen as two sides of the same coin.

  116. 116
    Ultraviolet Thunder says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    Don’t forget welfare reform. A lot of people haven’t.
    I loved Clinton but he did give the GOP a lot of their agenda while also giving them an ebil soshulist to rail against.

  117. 117
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @WereBear: @James E. Powell: He had a ton of things he wanted to get done. But he hadn’t figured out how to get them past the Republicans

    My memory’s a bit foggy, but didn’t Moynihan deliver some of the deadliest cuts to Clinton’s (the Clintons’) efforts at HCR? To say nothing of the likes of John Breaux and Shelby? Gingrich didn’t even get rid of Bob Michel till the ’94 election.

  118. 118
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @grandpajohn:

    Someone in the MSM, whose name escapes me, the other day asked some GOP House member, whose name also escapes me, why it was necessary to hold Vote #37 or whatever it was to repeal Obamacare, despite the foregone conclusion. The answer, I paraphrase but shit you not, was that there are members of the House who were only elected in 2012 and hadnt had the chance to vote against it earlier (duh, because they hadn’t been elected yet), and since they had campaigned on repealing Obamacare it wouldn’t be fair to them not to hold a vote once they were duly-elected members.

    These people are fucking insane.

  119. 119
    Mnemosyne says:

    @SiubhanDuinne:

    Actually, it makes perfect sense when you think about it — those congresscritters need something to run in their re-election ads, but they can’t actually pass any legislation because then they would be collaborating with the Kenyan Muslim Usurper. Holding yet another anti-Obamacare vote will let them go back to their districts and tell their constitutents that they “stood up against Obamacare” and should be re-elected.

    I mean, it makes no sense from a “running the government” perspective, but it makes perfect sense from a “getting re-elected” perspective, and that’s all that matters.

  120. 120
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    This, exactly.

  121. 121
    Patrick says:

    @SiubhanDuinne:

    Someone in the MSM, whose name escapes me, the other day asked some GOP House member, whose name also escapes me, why it was necessary to hold Vote #37 or whatever it was to repeal Obamacare, despite the foregone conclusion. The answer, I paraphrase but shit you not, was that there are members of the House who were only elected in 2012 and hadnt had the chance to vote against it earlier (duh, because they hadn’t been elected yet), and since they had campaigned on repealing Obamacare it wouldn’t be fair to them not to hold a vote once they were duly-elected members.

    Using this strange logic, the GOP will need to hold a vote repeal the ACA after EVERY election. Because there will always be new members of the house.

    If nothing else, a hell of a good reason not vote Republican.

  122. 122
    Ultraviolet Thunder says:

    @Patrick:

    Using this strange logic, the GOP will need to hold a vote repeal the ACA after EVERY election. Because there will always be new members of the house.

    It’ll become their strange superstitious fetish like not walking on the baselines, or touching every fencepost on the way to school. Or not talking about a no-hitter. Never saying Macbeth, etc.

  123. 123
    Elie says:

    None of this stuff has got solid stuff at its core. Benghazi has always been a nothingburger. Then we follow up with the IRS thing which day by day looks more like a bunch of overworked and underdirected civil servants.. what you gonna put little folks in jail? Then AP — just remember Valery Plame and the contacts she had that were killed after some asshole in the Bush Administration had to do payback with the media. Most of the public may not link to that, but they have heard all of this bullshit before — and they know bullshit when they see and hear it.

  124. 124
    Cacti says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    My memory’s a bit foggy, but didn’t Moynihan deliver some of the deadliest cuts to Clinton’s (the Clintons’) efforts at HCR? To say nothing of the likes of John Breaux and Shelby? Gingrich didn’t even get rid of Bob Michel till the ’94 election.

    Dems were really attrocious about supporting healthcare reform in 1993. George Mitchell couldn’t even muster 51 votes in the Senate for any of the proposed legislation. HCR died for another 15 years, and Clinton never tried to advance another major liberal policy goal for the rest of his time in office.

  125. 125
    Suffern ACE says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: yep. The democrats had no discipline. And rather than work from their own presidents plan, decided to offer up their own competing plans. Yes, it was like “here is the insurance industry plan”, here is the hospital industry plan. The whole point was to get all the plans out there and not reconcile them. I think there may have been five plans, not counting the republican plans, and none had enough support to pass.

  126. 126
    Patrick says:

    @Keith:

    That’s what happens when you try to make anything and everything a scandal. Hell, I had a co-worker telling me *2 years* ago that Obama should be impeached. I go, “For WHAT?!?”, and the response was “For not following the Constitution”. They shot their wad on this stuff.

    That’s not a credible argument considering THEY didn’t scream for Bush’s impeachment (where to start – warrantless wiretapping for one) or Reagan’s impeachment (Iran contra). Talk about not following the constitution…

  127. 127
    Cacti says:

    @Suffern ACE:

    The democrats had no discipline. And rather than work from their own presidents plan, decided to offer up their own competing plans.

    It was worse than not having discipline.

    There were more than a few established Dems who thought that the boomer hippie from Dogpatch, Arkansas, needed to be put in his place, and that he hadn’t kissed enough rings before ascending to the White House.

  128. 128
    Haydnseek says:

    @dmsilev: It’s true. Jeffrey W. Has beautiful close-ups that prove it. With that, I’m off to dine.

  129. 129
    Haydnseek says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: Yeah, right. The Supremes had nothing to do with it. How much bigger did Gore’s popular vote margin have to be?

  130. 130
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @Ultraviolet Thunder:
    When Clinton signed The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 into law I realized that he was in the business of showing the Democratic party just how good a Republican president could be.

  131. 131

    […] After several days of scandal flame-fanning by Republicans, President Obama’s approval ratings are actually up just a tick. […]

  132. 132
    lojasmo says:

    @pokeyblow:

    Protip, sport:

    The fact that nobody responded earlier shouldn’t be taken to mean that everybody needed you to repeat yourself.

  133. 133
    lojasmo says:

    @Anya:

    I think only people with a vested interest in somebody’s sexual orientation has any kind of working gaydar.

    Mine is seriously nonfunctional.

  134. 134
    steve says:

    It sucks that our traditional source of news is dying off, but it’s a self-inflicted wound

    The news media dying has basically nothing to do with being too liberal/too conservative/too fake balancey or anything content related. If you want to know why, for instance, newspapers are in a death spiral, just look at this for about 3 seconds:

    newspaper ad revenue, adjusted for inflation, 1950-2012

    0$ on craigslist, searchable, with pics and unlimited space beats $150 for 4 tiny unsearchable text lines run 3 times in the Raleigh News & Observer.

    Nothing to do with content. Just technological disruption destroying a business model that subsidized journalism.

  135. 135
    JR in WV says:

    @Patrick:

    I grew up in an old-fashioned Republican household, where people believed that individual hard work would take you forward in this world. They were also way in favor of integration.

    But the new Republican Party has turned me into a Yellow Dog Democrat – I would vote ifor a yellow dawg before I would vote for a Republican. They are against everything that ever made America great. They think torture is a good thing, and seem genuinely confused when people tell them that torture is what seperated the Allies from the evil Axis in WW II.

    America was a Shining City on the hill because America knew that torture was evil, no matter the justification for it. This seems so obvious to me I can’t understand why the R’s don’t get it…

    Major lack of integrity on the part of the conservatives, I’ll never be able to support someone who can’t get that.

  136. 136
    gene108 says:

    @James E. Powell:

    I think Clinton could’ve really moved people back towards believing government can solve problems and thus have been transformative. We were on the verge of following the Reagan narrative of “government is the problem”, but 20 years ago there were enough folks still alive and kicking, who gave the government the credit via the New Deal, GI Bill, etc. as the reason they were still alive and kicking and wanted government to be that standard again.

    When Clinton gave the outlines of his health care plan, I believe it had somewhere close to 70% approval, before special interests and Republicans started working to undermine it.

    Clinton wasn’t the right-winger in Democratic clothing people make him out to be. As a politician he went where the winds blew to survive.

    Trying to allow gays to serve openly in the military wasn’t co-opting a Republican idea. Trying to pass universal health care wasn’t co-opting a Republican idea. Pushing the Assault Weapons Ban wasn’t co-opting Republican ideas. His original tax bill/budget bill wasn’t co-opting Republican ideas; no Republicans voted for it.

    What wasn’t apparent was how narrow Clinton’s window was to actually win over voters towards government being a force for good and how fragile the psyche of voters was in actually wanting to trust government again, as well as the belief the MSM were honest brokers of information.

    Hell, Reagan wouldn’t have been that tranformative a President without the vast right-wing media machine upselling his legacy and rewriting how conservative he actually was.

  137. 137
    gene108 says:

    @JR in WV:

    America was a Shining City on the hill because America knew that torture was evil, no matter the justification for it.

    One of the last things Reagan did was get the Senate to unanimously ratify a U.N. treaty against torture.

    Reagan’s words to the Senate leave no doubt he did not support the idea of the U.S. using torture.

    Reagan also wanted to rid the world of nukes, so Republican opposition to any arms treaty, a few years ago, also flies against the beliefs of Saint Ronnie.

  138. 138
    gene108 says:

    @BillinGlendaleCA:

    In the republican mind, killing ACA is a jobs bill.

    The first thing Republicans did was vote to repeal the PPACA, in 2011. I believe they called the first bill they drew up for repeal the “Repeal the Job Killing Heatlhcare Reform Law Act”.

    I remember around this time watching a freshman GOP Congresscritter on CSPAN get asked by a viewer what they were doing to create more jobs and he said with a straight face, “they repealed Obamacare”.

  139. 139
    Keith G says:

    @jl:

    Though if Obama keeps setting precedents that normalize it, I don;t like that at all.

    I fear that this normalization will be one of the key elements anchoring an historic view of the Obama Presidency.

  140. 140
    Mnemosyne says:

    @steve:

    Just technological disruption destroying a business model that subsidized journalism.

    Not just technological disruption — when I moved to Los Angeles in 1988, there were at least four major department store chains: Bullock’s, The Broadway, The May Company, and Robinson’s. All four of them would take out full-page and half-page ads, pay for color supplements, etc.

    Now all four of them have been absorbed by the Macy’s conglomerate. Instead of getting paid for four separate multi-page color inserts every Sunday, the LA Times gets paid for just one.

    Retail conglomeration and consolidation have seriously injured the newspaper business, but no one wants to talk about it.

  141. 141
    Elie says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    So much of our “wealth” and business ownership has become more and more concentrated in the hands of the few. I think that must be reversed and is and will be the REAL war over the next decade – not only here but world wide. All this stuff against the poor and working class is to place a stake in the ground to prevent them/us from getting the notion that we are owed some part of what they have – even as they made it off of our backs or outright stole it.

  142. 142
    Steeplejack says:

    @Anya:

    I think you are misunderstanding something that TBogg didn’t phrase well in the heat of the moment. I think his intent is clear with a couple of tweaks:

    Obviously I don’t speak for the gay community, but I’d I would find it highly disrespectful that if some people would try and use my movement as a delivery device for their message.

    He’s not saying that the gay movement is his movement.

  143. 143
    taylormattd says:

    @cleek: god I love tbogg

  144. 144
    Catsy says:

    @gene108:

    A lot of the disillusionment came from Watergate and lingered for longer than people care to remember or admit.

    Not just Watergate–Iran-Contra was a huge wound to the credibility of the executive branch, to say nothing of Vietnam and the decade of stories about American POWs left in that country.

    And that’s not even getting into eight years of Reagan telling us that government was the problem.

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