Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Congress: Giving us what we want.

There are a couple of readings (or misreadings as the case may be) of the mood of the country which have grabbed my attention the last couple of days.

First the spokestoady filling in for Tony Snow alerted us that the American people wanted a change in policy in Iraq, and by surging more troops into Iraq the President was merely giving us what we want. This is figuratively the same as telling us that because we wanted off a hot frying pan, we have had our wishes fulfilled by having been deposited into the fire.

Here is precisely what Deputy Press Secretary Dana Perino had to say about public approval for the surge:
The American people have wanted change in Iraq, and they got it. The president announced a new policy on January 10th that was quite different and divergent from where we were before.
It is obvious the change the American people want in Iraq is not a bigger version of failure. If we could take back the entire affair we would by a wide margin. Frankly I find it mind boggling that 3/4 of Republicans still think the war is a worthy effort. If not for that base of administration koolaid drinkers, support for the war would be in the single digits.

Which segue's nicely into the 2nd part of this post: The A.P. Ipsos poll showing increased support for Congress under Democratic control. Congressional approval is the highest in a year, and Congress has more favorable marks than the President. The 40% approval of Congress is up 15% points from the last poll taken when Republicans had control. Nancy Pelosi in particular has higher approval (47%) than disapproval (43%).

A plurality are now exactly split with 39% each believing the country will be better off now that Democrats control Congress, or thinking it will not make much of a difference. 21% believe the country will be worse off. It's always easy to pick out the administrations koolaid drinkers portion of the polls respondents. Those 21% comprise a large part of the 27% who think the country is going in the right direction.

But heres the part that stood out for me. After all this good news about the people liking Democrats in control of Congress, and thinking they will do well etc etc... there is this question:
How confident are you that President Bush and the Democrats in Congress can work together to solve the country's problems?
-Very confident, 3 percent (5)
-Somewhat confident, 24 percent (35)
-Not too confident, 40 percent (35)
-Not at all confident, 33 percent (25)
In other words even as public opinion for Congress steadily increases, the people do not expect Congress to be able to get along with the President. It seems to me that the people WANT Congress to confront this administration. The more this Congress obstructs this Presidents rolling disaster of an administration, the more popular Congress will be.

Beyond appealing to Congress' inherent interest in popularity, the other goodness that comes from them battling Bush at every turn is that doing so is the best thing they can do for the nation. There is no use in appeasing Bush or his koolaid drinking followers. They can not be reasoned with. Fight them at every turn and do the right thing for America.

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