Voters say they’re even more ready for change than in … 2008?

“Immunity? Like with a shot or something?”

Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton — as discussed earlier this week — brings her own set of challenges to winning the presidency. She isn’t being helped by the man she would replace.

An NBC News/Wall Street Journal opinion poll released this week had some fairly predictable numbers for the most part. People are about as likely to disapprove of the job President Obama is doing, for example, as they have been for months. What surprised me, though — and what ought to surprise, and perhaps frighten, a lot of Democrats who talk about how much better things are now than when Obama took office — is how ready the public is for change.

In mid-2008, registered voters surveyed by NBC/WSJ said by a 55-40 margin they preferred as president “a person who will bring greater changes to the current policies” over “a more experienced and tested person.” That was a clear indication of what was to come that November, when Obama’s “hopenchange” candidacy defeated the GOP nominee, longtime senator John McCain.

In the poll released this week, registered voters said they had that same preference, only slightly more strongly: 59-38.

That’s right: Voters are even more ready for change now than they were when Hopenchange was running to succeed … George W. Bush.

Jeb Bush

As it turns out, this is not good news for a candidate named Clinton or Bush. By a 60-27 margin, Jeb Bush was deemed more past than future. The news was better, but not good, for Hillary: 51-44 in the wrong direction.

In short, it’s not a good thing this year if your last name means you can/must go by your first name.

Unfortunately for Hillary, this is likely to get worse. Approval of Obama’s handling of foreign policy remains stuck in the mid-30s. To break away from that, Hillary would have to stake out ground that’s decisively different from Obama’s, in a policy area she used to lead for him. And yet, two of the highest-profile fights between Obama and congressional Republicans of late have been on foreign policy: the Netanyahu speech, and the GOP senators’ letter to Iran. The more Obama fights the GOP about foreign policy, the more he makes that issue about him and continuing down the path he has been leading — with, in his first term, help from Hillary. That puts her in a virtually impossible position at a time when voters want someone to chart a different course.

Reader Comments 0

85 comments
lvg
lvg

What difference does it make?

Plumb Krazy
Plumb Krazy

Elizabeth Warren for prez and Rand Paul for vice prez, or vice versa.

Starik
Starik

@Plumb Krazy With the current political climate, should such a combination be Pres./Vice Pres, the President would need the heaviest Secret Service protection in history.  Both would have to travel on a single airplane for sure.

EdUktr
EdUktr

So Hillary got to put on her show in a United Nations venue Tuesday—just as if she's a reigning diplomat rather than an unemployed politico. 

And no one in the media has any comment.

Dusty2
Dusty2

Bah humbug!  Who cares about polls?  We KNOW that Americans just want to get out from under the rule of Obama.  He's overruled Congress and the Constitution; ruined healthcare, the nations finances, our prestige abroad and any respect for the White House.  He epitomizes the failures of liberal Democrats and we don't want another "ruler". That includes  a female one.


I like the Bush family.  Honest, intelligent, experienced and unafraid of politics and the propaganda that has been poured upon them by Democrats who are fearful of such attributes.  Only the weak are afraid of integrity while admiring a bombastic nature and the giver of improbable promises.  .


Think people!  Maintain  democracy!  Stay away from  liberal communes and their country crashing commitments!  Get far far away from the losers known as socialistic  Democrats  before they make us any weaker, almost worthless financially  and cringing cowardly in tough confrontations. .  It's unworthy AND detrimental!.  !  

Starik
Starik

@Dusty2 You don't find it unsettling that, while the older Bush volunteered for military service and served in combat, the son dodged the draft in '68?

MarkVV
MarkVV

@Dusty2 

Bah humbug!  Who cares about polls?  We KNOW that Americans are glad they got out from under the rule of George Bush. He did nothing about healthcare, ruined the nations finances and economy, took us to a war of aggression under false pretenses, ruined our prestige abroad and any respect for the White House.  He epitomizes the failures of conservative Republicans and we don't want another one like he.

MarkVV
MarkVV

It is rather interesting how Kyle cherry picks the results of the poll, picking up the one meaningless result about “change” vs. “experience,” and ignoring, for instance, the 55/23 support for the presidential candidate’s position on increasing the taxes on the wealthy, or the 39/29 for same-sex marriage. Or, the total positive image of Obama as 44 percent, vs. 35 percent for George W. Bush, in spite of the general trend to consider the past presidents in better light when they leave the office.

Starik
Starik

I should have voted for Hillary instead of Obama in the primary; Obama disappoints.  She is flawed, like any candidate, but I'm not tempted to vote for a Republican who will have to adopt a bunch of stupid positions to placate the nut fringe to win the primaries. 

Dimick
Dimick

Hillary's biggest problem with the Obama foreign policy is that she is such a large part of that 30% approval. Added to her other problems. Like transparency issues? Hmm.. failure to keep public emails on public servers as and when required by the rules? Her ability to raise the ire of those on the right as no other Democrat can do, which says she is not a good a prospect  for greater change when Congress is likely to remain split after 2016? 


The polling is nothing compared to her political baggage and abrasive personality, which is enough to beat her.

stogiefogey
stogiefogey

"People are about as likely to disapprove of the job President Obama is doing..."

Probably has a lot to do with the fact that the starry-eyed Millennials who voted for Hope'nChange a few years ago have grown into adulthood as they've observed him and realized what a mistake they made.

Hedley_Lammar
Hedley_Lammar

Hardworking Americans generally aren't on the dole.  Democrats are.  Obamaphone!


Sure they are. Somebody has to subsidize Wal Marts low wages.


Someone who works full time 40 + hours and makes 9 bucks is typically going to require a lot of government assistance. 


The truth is most poor people work very very hard doing jobs most of us wouldnt. These are the people you call moochers


Those and retirees and active duty military. They make up that 47 percent ( which is a cherry picked number BTW ) 



LilBarryBailout
LilBarryBailout

@HeadleyLamar

Taking a job that pays so little that tax payer assistance is required is just dumb.

Get better jobs, Democrats.  Minimum wage is for teenagers working for gas money and weed.

MarkVV
MarkVV

This kind of reading of the poll with respect to what it means for Hillary Clinton’s presumed candidacy is not just speculation, it is meaningless. For one thing, both Democrats and Republicans were asked the question about experience vs. change; thus their answers were colored by whom they had in mind for the choice in the elections – a Republican or a Democrat. And specifically, the poll shows the strong support for Mrs. Clinton’s vs. other contenders among the Democrats – clearly showing that the experience vs. change does not cause those voters, who would vote for a Democratic candidate, to turn against her.

ALibNotToBeMessedW/
ALibNotToBeMessedW/

Keep your eye on the prize, Kyle.  Hillary isn't the prize.  The conservative road to the White House doesn't lead through Ms. Clinton.

TicTacs
TicTacs

If you can't beat President Obama in a down economy,  you got nothing.  Nada.  Its the philosophy that is the GOP problem,  their ideas don't work and lead to a train wreck.  Look at the childish behavior of the GOP senators and reps. They don't respect their role or realize how classless they have become.  They have no honor. 

AvgGeorgian
AvgGeorgian

@LilBarryBailout @Jefferson1776 Do you feel like companies are sharing increases in productivity and profits to the extent that enough good jobs are available to allow people to access self sufficiency. My research indicates that for the last 40 years there has been a systematic effort to exclude most workers from sharing in economic gains.

LilBarryBailout
LilBarryBailout

@Jefferson1776

In a down economy, a large segment of the population votes for the sure thing--a check from their tax paying neighbors.  Democrats are the party of checks from hard working Americans to people who like free stuff.

JFMcNamara
JFMcNamara

The question is a dumb question.  Here's why. Republicans will want change because they hate Obama.  Democrats will say they want change because they think he is too moderate.  


It's similar to less people saying the economy will improve.  Of course less people believe the economy will improve because it's a lot better.  More people think it will be about the same.


They asked his approval rating.  That shows more accurately how people feel, and explains why Hillary is winning in the polling.  For the record, I want someone fifteen from Hillary too.

Caius
Caius

Speaking of polls and the desire for change:


"Jerusalem (AFP) - Final opinion polls on Friday put Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's rightwing Likud party four seats behind its centre-left rival with four days to go before a general election.

Several polls released Friday -- the last day opinion surveys can be released before Tuesday's vote -- showed the Zionist Union pulling further ahead of Likud after an intense campaign."

But as we have noted previously, in an election 4 days can be an eternity.

LogicalDude
LogicalDude

"than they were when Hopenchange was running "


Wow, Kyle, I thought you were above this kind of thing.  I thought you'd use the President's name as appropriate. 


The Republicans are finding themselves on the wrong side of history with the Netanyahu speech and the Iran letter. 


But I agree with you that Bush and Clinton need to remain in the past.  Better candidates from each side need to appear.   Republicans looks stronger on that end than Democrats. 

Hedley_Lammar
Hedley_Lammar

 And yet, two of the highest-profile fights between Obama and congressional Republicans of late have been on foreign policy: the Netanyahu speech, and the GOP senators’ letter to Iran.


Both of which went horribly for the GOP and their President Netanyahu.


He is going to lose big time back home. 

Hedley_Lammar
Hedley_Lammar

Id say a woman President would be a pretty big change.

FIGMO2
FIGMO2

@HeadleyLamar

You just proved the point I made below.

Not that I agree, but for some voters, the fact that Hillary's a woman will be change enough....much like with Obama's being black.

Some voters play in the shallow end of the pool.

No need for floaties in your pool.

RafeHollister
RafeHollister

@HeadleyLamar I am with you, I think we can all get behind Carly, a real woman with accomplishments of her own.

Hedley_Lammar
Hedley_Lammar

@LilBarryBailout He doesn't love America because he is from Kenya right ?


Ive always said Republicans love America like a 4 year old loves mommy


Democrats love America in a more sophisticated adult way. We understand the good outweighs the bad but that we should strive to improve on the bad.


Republicans just see America as " Were number 1 " and anyone that says otherwise is a bad person. 

LilBarryBailout
LilBarryBailout

@HeadleyLamar @LilBarryBailout

Today's Democrats love America in a way that causes them to forget who our allies are, punishes them, and embraces enemies who swear to god that they want to kill us.

That is called "nuance" and is "sophisticated".

straker
straker

DawgDad - "there are plenty of good candidates in both parties"


The real problem is that the good candidates simply don't want to engage in the rock bottom mud slinging needed to get elected.


So, they don't run and we get the bottom of the barrel on our ballots..

FIGMO2
FIGMO2

Not that I agree, but for some voters, the fact that Hillary's a woman will be change enough....much like with Obama's being black.

Some voters play in the shallow end of the pool.

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

I'll also add, if things get so bad for Obama that he actually doesn't make a speech in person at the Democratic National Convention in 2016 for fear of alienating general election voters, then I'll brace for a McCain/Palin-type collapse. Otherwise...

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

This piece goes a mighty long way to avoid mentioning what GW Bush's approvals were like in the last two years of his second term.

If I see Obama's numbers falling to the low 30s/high 20s, then I'll brace for a McCain/Palin-type collapse. Otherwise...

Kyle_Wingfield
Kyle_Wingfield moderator

@Visual_Cortex The poll release didn't have approval/disapproval numbers for GW Bush. It had some very positive/positive/neutral/negative/very negative numbers for both presidents, and Bush's were worse. What would concern me, if I were a Democrat and especially a "Ready for Hillary" type, is that Obama's numbers are better and voters still are more apt than in 2008 to say they'd vote for change over experience.

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

@Kyle_Wingfield @Visual_Cortex

Fair points.

Just so you know, I'm ready for someone other than Hillary, but would, I guess, hold my nose and cast a vote and hope she'd be a better president than her husband, assuming it's her vs. John Bush, Scott Walker, or suchlike.

I'll add too, that it's not quite enough for voters to say they want change; the person aiming to make that change has to sell him/herself, as well.

ALibNotToBeMessedW/
ALibNotToBeMessedW/

@Kyle_Wingfield @Visual_Cortex

Doesn't that make "the voters" hypocrites?  They voted for "inexperienced change" in 2008, and supposedly weren't / aren't happy, but now they'll vote for change over experience?   

IReportYouWhine#1
IReportYouWhine#1

When you hear the liberals badmouthing Scott Walker, you know he's the guy that they fear the most.


Time for some real change.

Hedley_Lammar
Hedley_Lammar

@IReportYouWhine#1 Id rather have someone who got further in school than Jethro thank you. 


This country cant survive more people like Phil Gramm on the Science committee who admits he has never sent an email


Or James Inhofe on Environment and Public Works committees who thinks a snowball and Genesis disprove Climate Change


Enough is enough. 

Hedley_Lammar
Hedley_Lammar

@Kyle_Wingfield @HeadleyLamar A lot


Science is a bit about curiosity about the world around you.


The fact he hasn't sent an email in this day and age show a lack of that. 

Just like say not believing in evolution would make one so Scientifically ignorant that it would be easy to see that same person deny established Science like Climate Change. 

Kyle_Wingfield
Kyle_Wingfield moderator

@HeadleyLamar I can at least see where you're coming from regarding evolution. But email, to me, just seems like a matter of personal preference. Bill Clinton says he has sent only two emails; is he not curious about what's around him?

Hedley_Lammar
Hedley_Lammar

@Kyle_Wingfield @HeadleyLamar Bill Clinton says he has sent only two emails; is he not curious about what's around him?


You teed that one up but I'm not taking the bait. 


It depends upon what the meaning of the word 'is' is. If the—if he—if 'is' means is and never has been, that is not—that is one thing. If it means there is none, that was a completely true statement

JFMcNamara
JFMcNamara

@Kyle_Wingfield @HeadleyLamar


Email is kinda scientific? :)


He does have a real point about Walker though.  He doesn't have a college degree and left with a 2.6 GPA.  Being a governor is a lot different than president.  I don't want someone uneducated in charge of the military.

Kyle_Wingfield
Kyle_Wingfield moderator

@HeadleyLamar So Gates and Zuckerburg are "uneducated"?

If you want to say "unqualified," OK, I might disagree but at least that's debatable. I don't think anyone who has graduated high school and made it through three-plus years of college can really be called "uneducated."