The Bush administration and its conservative defenders continue to argue, against all evidence and common sense, that President Bush’s economic policies have actually been good for the country. The public disagrees. In fact, they overwhelmingly and strenuously disagree.
Consider this result from a late June Los Angeles Times poll. Respondents were asked whether the country is better off, worse off, or the same because of Bush’s economic policies than it was eight years ago when he took office. The verdict: 75 percent said the country is worse off—including 59 percent who said we are much worse off—while only 9 percent said we were better off, and 12 percent said about the same.
One particular source of dissatisfaction is Bush’s policy (or lack thereof) on dealing with high gas prices. In the same poll, by a stunning 81 percent to 10 percent, the public said the Bush administration hasn’t done enough “to control rising gas and oil prices and ease its effect on American families.”
With public sentiment this strong, politicians that persist in defending the president’s conservative economic policies are likely to suffer some very unpleasant consequences.