Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Bush Handling of Katrina, though Sept 12

Approval of President Bush's handling of hurricane Katrina situation, through September 12 polling. Posted by Picasa

Three new polls now suggest an improvement in the public's rating of President Bush's handing of the Hurricane Katrina situation. ABC/Washington Post, Gallup and SurveyUSA each show approval ratings over 42%, the best cluster of poll results for the President in several days.

The addition of these new polls produces a substantial uptick in the trend line of approval, shown in red in the graph above. However, this uptick may be an artifact of house effects. The two polls with comparable questions produce essentially no change.

The ABC/Washington Post result shows a slight decline in approval from 46% on 9/2 to 44% in the new poll taken 9/8-11. SurveyUSA poll, taken 9/12 holds steady at 42%, the same as on the previous SurveyUSA poll of 9/8

The Gallup result is for a different question than Gallup used in it's earlier survey of 9/5-6. In that earlier survey the question was "On a different topic: Do you think George W. Bush has done a great, good, neither good nor bad, bad, or terrible job in responding to the hurricane and subsequent flooding?" In the new survey, conducted 9/8-11 Gallup used it's more usual question: "Do you approve or disapprove of the way George W. Bush is handling the response to Hurricane Katrina?" Approval in the first survey ("great or good job") was only 35% compared to 43% in the new survey. However, the earlier question included a "neither good nor bad" category that drew 21% of the responses. So the conclusion is that the Gallup numbers are badly non-comparable, and no trend should be inferred from the two Gallup numbers alone. (If anyone knows of the more standard Gallup item on the earlier poll, please let me know. It wasn't in the original Gallup report.)