For the first time, more people say George W. Bush’s presidency will be judged as unsuccessful than say it will be seen as a success, a poll finds.
Forty-one percent of respondents said Bush’s presidency will be seen as unsuccessful in the long run, while 26 percent said the opposite. Thirty-five percent said it was too early to tell, according to the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press.
In January, 36 percent said successful and 27 percent said unsuccessful.
The increasing pessimism about Bush’s long-term prospects comes at a time when many polls have found the public increasingly is negative about Bush’s performance and the direction of the country.
Seven in 10 said they want the next president to offer policies and programs that are different from the Bush administration’s.
Only half said they wanted the next president to offer different policies in 2000, at the end of the Clinton presidency. By a 2-1 margin, people said the Bush administration has had a negative impact on politics and the way government works.
More say Bush’s policies made things worse
People were inclined to say Bush’s policies have made things worse on a wide range of issues such as the federal budget deficit, the gap between rich and poor, health care, the economy, relations with U.S. allies, the tax system and education. By 47 percent to 30 percent, those surveyed said Bush has improved the situation with national security.
Republicans give the president mixed reviews in many of these areas. Almost half of Republicans said Bush’s policies have made the deficit worse and just 12 percent say he has improved that situation.
The poll of 1,500 adults was taken Oct. 6-10 and has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.