Well wadda ya know? Folks are beginning to miss ole George W. Bush according to a recent Gallop Poll:
Bush has maintained a fairly low profile in the four years since he left office. However, he returned to the public eye this year with the April opening of his presidential library at Southern Methodist University in Dallas.
Bush left office with 40% viewing him favorably and 59% unfavorably in January 2009. That worsened to 35% favorable and 63% unfavorable in March 2009, but his favorable rating recovered to the mid-40% range by 2010.
The June 1-4 poll shows further improvement in Americans’ ratings of Bush, which had not been more positive than negative since April 2005. Prior to then, Americans had always viewed Bush more favorably than unfavorably, including an 87% favorable rating in November 2001 after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. That is one percentage point below the all-time high Gallup has measured for any public figure, shared by Colin Powell (2002) and Tiger Woods (2000).
Bush’s lowest favorable rating was 32% in April 2008, as the economy was in recession and gas prices were headed toward record highs in the U.S. Also at the time, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama were engaged in a spirited campaign to become the Democratic nominee who would run for president to succeed Bush.
As the article notes… former Presidents are generally treated kindly in hindsight. I offer an exception to that general rule — the truly bad ones: James Buchanan — aka the former WORST President ever and Jimmy Carter who has scooched down (or is that up?) to third-worst overall; second worst one-Termer slide down and I think Obama will go down as the worst ever — and generally thought to be so by a wide margin. George W. Bush might just be our King Josiah. In any case… take it away Cinderella (you’re welcome Eric).