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Last week, the President got blind-sided by media focus on the latest CNN/ORC International poll. His approval hit an eighteen month low at 45%.
An increasing distrust in the office propelled younger voters to continue the downward trajectory of national opinion of the President.
Obama was already at a nine month low going into cyber security talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping at the end of the first week in June. Already polls like Rasmussen found a disapproving voting majority against the Commander-in-Chief. The Edward Snowden – National Security Agency (NSA) scandal threw the President decidedly off guard. In a rush to defend the Administration against accusations of authoritarianism, the President misspoke. On June 7, he was repeatedly called a liar by those in Congress for exaggerating the amount of oversight legislators have over the spying NSA. A week later, CBS’s Charlie Rose redirected the President’s talking points on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act courts which do not turn down search and seizure requests for citizens’ private data.
While Pew polls still show a majority following the Administration after Snowden aspersions on the NSA, subsequent Gallup, CBS and Fox polls have shown indices passing 60% against the President’s surveillance state.
A stunning 74% of an early June Fox News poll believe the Administration to be less open and transparent than previous President George W. Bush.
With a trio of Cabinet scandals and a bunch of contested Cabinet appointments, the lame duck Administration may soon face a media that widely reflects the cynical Republican opinions of the office.
A Fox poll from over a week ago presents the picture of a distrusting constituency: 63% believes the President’s Justice Department seized reporters’ records for political reasons; 68% believes that the White House is lying about the targeting of political enemies by the IRS; and, worst of all, 56% believes Obama did not rescue an overrun American Embassy in Benghazi, Libya last September 11th for fear of an election-endangering failure or standoff.
This kind of cynicism is hard to walk away from and bottoms out at around the 15% approval rating for Congress as a whole.
The latest Pew polls have found a startling rise in Presidential name-calling, citing, ‘Liar,’ and ‘Incompetent,’ to be the new additions following up, ‘Good,’ and, ‘Honest.’
During the June 15 Hong Kong Edward Snowden rally, hundreds marched through the streets and many attacked the President, holding up the same blue and red Hope posters that Barak Obama rode to 2008 Presidential glory to now castigate and defame.
In step with public opinion, Congress has begun circling the Administration to turn from questions of moral authority to legal issues of governance. On June 25, the House Oversight Committee subpoenaed four State Department officials to investigate administrative neglect in Benghazi.
The Administration’s lawyer, Attorney General Eric Holder, has yet to receive a subpoena to appear before legislators, but he did miss a deadline to explain possible May 15 perjury surrounding the search and seizure of Fox News reporter James Rosen’s digital records.
Perhaps appearing before the House Judiciary Committee to explain away lying under oath as the President’s NSA programs got media scrutiny, was more than the Administration could bear.
Rather than apologize, the Justice Department authoritatively sent a letter assuring that James Rosen would not face prosecution. Confidence, the letter was meant to convey, since Holder signed the subpoena himself though apparently forgot to admit to Congress he had been secretly investigating.
Seeing that the Attorney General has already been held in contempt of Congress once for his cover up of operation ‘Fast and Furious,’ and hearing Republicans warn the public that we may see Mr. Holder under oath again shortly, and understanding the Democratic Party’s belief that at least 41% of voters want a new Attorney General to represent the people, Democratic Senator Joe Manchin (WV) appealed to Mr. Holder on Bloomberg News a week ago to consider resigning.
However, resignation may play a dangerous precedent for this Administration as the Commander-in-Chief takes his family globe trotting from Ireland’s G8 conference to a planned 100 million dollar set of talks in Southern Africa before July 4.
The President’s Secretary of Treasury and former Chief of Staff, Jack Lew, admitted to knowing of unscrupulous, partisan (IRS) Internal Revenue Service investigations a full year before the media began to add IRS-gate to Holder-gate and Benghazi-gate.
Early June testimony from IRS agents continues to contradict the Democratic firewall set up by outgoing IRS Commissioner Steven Miller in mid May who claimed rogue agents targeted Republicans and conservatives. Apparently orders from Washington guided those in Cincinnati to target and repress.
The continuing testimony couples with suspicious reports that the White House met with IRS heads hundreds of times.
As Judicial Watch’s, ‘District of Corruption,’ hit some 41 million households last week, the miraculous image of the pioneering President got doubted.
Decisions to soak Syrian rebel forces with a billion dollars of military aid as institutions like Walter Reed veterans’ hospital close amid spending cut has cast further suspicions on a Presidential approval rating with an historic 20 point sustained cushion over political dissatisfaction.
The man that once enjoyed the counter culture buoyancy of being the transparent politician is now increasingly pointed to as the Executive that followed up Bradley Manning’s prosecution with the Internal Threat Program to close ranks and pit career bureaucrats against the free market in what amounts to the promotion of state sponsored news.
Democrats fear that the unpopularity outbreak may severely hamper their chances in 2014 should (GAO) Government Accountability Office investigations prove presentiment, characterizing the President’s signature Affordable Healthcare Act as unable to arrive on time and up to spec.
Republicans have taken recent IRS spending scandals to suggest that the 12 billion dollar agency may not receive its promised 2,000 agents and 14% budget boost to implement the President’s National Healthcare legislation allocating 440 million to the IRS to oversee beneficiary expansion.
With a character in doubt and an Administration under attack, the American people may side with conservative criticisms against the pie-in-the-sky politician and his impossible promise of free universal healthcare. Louisiana Senator Elbert Guillroy certainly has, switching to the Republican party to level blame at Democrats for promising charity to perpetuate government manipulation of the public.
Image credit: Jamesomalley via Flickr