RUSH: There are a couple of polls out here today, and they greatly conflict with each other. They are about Obama's approval numbers. Now, the first poll is from Reuters. It's a Reuters/Ipsos poll, and according to this poll, approval for Obama has crashed. He's down to 43% approval in the Reuters poll. The other poll that's out is from Rasmussen. The Rasmussen poll has Obama's approval at above 50%. Now, there was another poll. It was Gallup earlier this week that had Obama's approval number at 48%. It was the first time he was under 50% in that poll in quite a while. So two out of three have Obama's approval number falling, but the Rasmussen breakdown illustrates the Limbaugh Theorem.
Listen to these two items. Obama's net approval rating remains above 50%. Second item: 29% of likely voters believe that government spending cuts hurt the economy. So let's round the number up and make it easy. Thirty percent of the people believe that cutting government spending will hurt the country. On the other side of that, by a 50% to 27% margin likely voters believe that increasing government spending hurts the economy. Now, right there we have the Limbaugh Theorem on display for one and all to see in the Rasmussen poll.
Fifty percent say that increasing government spending hurts the economy, and yet the same people give Obama high marks for job performance. They do not associate Obama with the increase in government spending! It doesn't say they associate it with the Republicans, but they clearly don't associate Obama with it. This is an amazing dichotomy. A little over 50% approve of Obama's job performance, and the same people say that increasing government spending hurts the economy.
Well, Obama is single-handedly increasing government spending. He's doing it by executive order. He's doing it by continuing resolution. He's doing it by budget crisis after budget crisis after budget crisis. He's the one doing it: $6 trillion been added to the national debt in four years under Obama, and the same people who say that that hurts the economy, in their opinion, approve of the job Obama is doing -- which means that the last four years of Obama's spending binge has not yet been seen as Obama's by the people in the Rasmussen poll.
This, frankly, is the problem the Republicans have to solve, and it really isn't that hard. They're going to have to figure out a way to make the president appear to be governing as he is rather than constantly campaigning. Now, let's go back to Reuters for a second here. "Less than two months into his second term, President Barack Obama's approval rating has drop, and Americans blame him and his fellow Democrats almost as much as his Republican opponents for the fiscal mess."
Now, in the White House, they don't like and don't believe Rasmussen. They believe this other stuff. I don't know what their internal polling is showing. Probably similar here. Now, this is an online poll that "showed 43% of people approve of Obama's handling of his job, down seven percentage points from February 19. Most of that steep drop came in the week to February 26 when it was becoming clear that Washington was going to be unable to put aside partisan differences and agree to halt automatic budget cuts which started last Friday.
"Confounding the White House's efforts to blame Republicans for the cuts, most respondents in the online survey hold both Democrats and Republicans responsible." Now, this is not the way it's supposed to work. This really only means that the news media and the rest of the Democrat Party are gonna have to redouble their efforts. I'm as confused as you are. There's two different polls here. I know a lot of people in this audience have a lot of faith in the Rasmussen poll.
You don't have a lot of faith in Reuters. Now, they were all correct, as it turns out (give or take a point or two) in the 2012 election forecasts. But Reuters, I'll tell you... In this story, they even go so far as to claim this. Quote: "Obama is now facing questions over whether he and fellow Democrats miscalculated the budget showdown and especially their messaging strategy of making frequent graphic warnings that public services were about to be decimated by cuts."
There aren't any cuts, but that doesn't matter. People think there are.