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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

GOP Clones Drive Bush Approval Surge

It appears that the Gallup Shop is at it again, oversampling Republicans like pod people, this time to jack up President Bush’s post-SOTU approval ratings, reports Steve Soto in the Left Coaster. Soto notes that Bush’s most recent CNN/USA Today/Gallup approval rating of 57 percent — up from 52 percent in early January — generated considerable buzz among the political pundocracy. But the sample was based on 37 percent Republicans, 35 percent Independents and just 28 percent Democrats–this depite other recent polls showing the Democrats taking a lead over the GOP.
As Soto points out:

Gallup feels that Democrats have fallen through the floor amongst the electorate as a whole, even though other polls since the election show the Democrats retaking a lead over the GOP.
The mid-January NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll was based on a sample that contained 39% Republicans and 39% Democrats; poll respondents said that Bush did not have a mandate.
The mid-January CBS News/New York Times poll was based on a sample that contained 34% Democrats and 31% Republicans.
The Pew Center poll and analysis released January 24, 2005 reflected a split of 33% Democrat, 30% Republican.
And it should be noted than an ABC News/Washington Post poll done in mid-December showed that Americans self-identified 11% more as being Democrats (38%) than those who identified as being Republican (27%).
Yet Gallup looks at the electorate over the weekend and somehow feels that Democrats have fallen to only 28% of the electorate, a figure never seen for the party in decades if ever. At what point in our history over the last several decades has the GOP ever had a 9% edge over the Democrats? And knowing that, why would they put out a poll showing a 57% approval rating when they must know that it is based on a bogus sample?

A fair question that merits a straight answer.