The Status Quo Isn’t Good Enough

Obviously it’s weak and cowardly for policy makers to let poll results overrule good judgment and common sense. But when all three tell congressional Dems to more forcefully oppose the president’s war policy, it’s probably a good idea to pay attention.

Almost six in 10 Americans said they do not think the additional troops sent to Iraq since the beginning of the year will help restore civil order there, and 53 percent — a new high in Post-ABC News polls — said they do not believe that the war has contributed to the long-term security of the United States.

Disapproval of Bush’s performance in office remains high, but the poll highlighted growing disapproval of the new Democratic majority in Congress. Just 39 percent said they approve of the job Congress is doing, down from 44 percent in April, when the new Congress was about 100 days into its term. More significant, approval of congressional Democrats dropped 10 percentage points over that same period, from 54 percent to 44 percent.

I was surprised to see several conservative observers say that support for Dems is connected to disappointment over the party’s policy agenda. One went so far as to suggest that Dems would fall even further if they pushed for withdrawal from Iraq.

The poll isn’t that ambiguous -- Dems lost support because liberal Democrats and other opponents of the war are unsatisfied with the majority’s policy on Iraq. Support didn’t drop because Dems have moved to the left; support dropped because they didn’t move to the left enough. For conservatives to crow about these results is rather silly.


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