From First Read:
From the new NBC/WSJ poll we released last night: Almost everyone is in lousy shape. Hillary Clinton’s fav/unfav numbers dropped from 44%-40% (+4) in June to 37%-48% (-11) now — which gives her a worse popularity rating than President Obama has ever had during his presidency. Jeb Bush’s fav/unfav rating, at 26%-40% (-14) is even worse — and it’s worse than Mitt Romney ever had at any point in the 2012 race. And Donald Trump, who leads the GOP horserace, is at 26%-56% (-30). Ratings for other Republicans: Chris Christie (-13), Ted Cruz (-12), Rand Paul (-10), Mike Huckabee (-8), Scott Walker (-1), and Marco Rubio (+1). Even President Obama, who has enjoyed a renaissance in his poll numbers as of late, has seen his overall job-approval rating tick down three points to 45%. So the American public is down on almost every political figure and institution in our NBC/WSJ poll.
America is full of malcontents.
The site did offer some exceptions: Bernie Sanders (+5), John Kasich (+5), the NRA (+11), and Planned Parenthood (+15).
We’ll call that a wash, I guess.
I’m not terribly concerned about the defunding of Planned Parenthood. This is all grandstanding and political theater. This happened in 2011, too, and it hurt the GOP. They were called (and rightly so) anti-woman’s health throughout the 2012 elections. And it had a serious negative impact. This is why Boehner doesn’t want the issue on his plate. So Republicans in the House will debate and make speeches and threaten, but they know — and everybody knows — that there are not enough votes in the Senate. And even if, by some miracle, it passes the House and the Senate, does anyone in their right mind think Obama will sign such a thing? Of course not.
The problem for Planned Parenthood, initially, were the videos. Conservatives thought they could do to PP what they did to ACORN — secretly film them doing bad things, and get Congress to defund. After all, if the videos genuinely exposed a criminal organ harvesting operation, eliminating its federal funding would be an on-point response. In reality, the effort to defund Planned Parenthood is completely unresponsive to the full content of the videos. In an admirably clear-eyed analysis of the Planned Parenthood controversy, Robert Tracinski of The Federalist (which has otherwise been a reliable outpost of rote anti-Planned Parenthood disinformation) admits, “The case wasn’t about what it seemed to be about based on the selected excerpts we had been offered.” The most plausible rationale for this is that conservatives, who have a permanent axe to grind with Planned Parenthood, are using deception to threaten its viability, and make it more difficult for women to obtain abortions as a consequence. And that is what they are left with: conservatives with an axe to grind.
I mean, the anti-choice crowd sent this issue gift-wrapped to Senator Warren:
So it is all kabuki theater. Republicans get to grandstand and provide red meat for their base. Planned Parenthood gets to fundraise off of being attacked again (which is fine). But this too shall pass.
And not to sound like an old fogie, but I can remember a time when political satire in movies would have featured a political ad like this…. for laughs!
This just makes me embarrassed for my country.