Thursday, September 13, 2007

Bush Approval: 4 New Polls, Trend at 33.3%

A very busy week for pollsters with four new polls today. CNN/ORC was conducted 9/7-9/07, finding 36% approval of President Bush's job performance while 61% disapprove. Harris, done 9/7-10/07 gets 31% approval, 67% disapproval, while AP/Ipsos from 9/10-12/07 puts approval at 33% and disapproval at 64%. The latest is the Fox poll taken 9/11-12/07 which finds approval at 37% and disapproval at 58%.

The addition of these four polls raises the trend estimate of approval to 33.3%. This is the first time since May 9 that approval has reached the one-third point.

The new polls are nicely balanced around the current estimate: Fox and CNN are about as far above the trend as Harris and AP are below it. You can get a sense of the house effects of each of these pollsters from the chart below.

The balance of polls above and below trend is also evident in the residuals plot below. No recent poll is close to being an outlier. All of the last 10 polls lie within the normal range of sampling variation.

With President Bush scheduled to address the nation tonight about Iraq policy it will be very interesting to see if the current upturn in approval is sustained. The testimony by General Petraeus and the President's speech could (I stress could) convince some citizens to give the Iraq policy more time, or could push in the opposite direction among those who were hopeful of a faster reduction in forces. (Note I'm talking about those still on the fence enough about Iraq to be affected either way. Obviously a lot of people have long since made up their minds in either direction and are unlikely to be affected by the testimony or the speech.)