(The article was co-authored by Matthew Jason.)
All politics aside, Americans still view President Obama, the man, very positively. On our recently completed Public Opinion Strategies “100 Day National Survey,” an amazing seventy-nine percent (79%) of the voters we talked to told us they like President Obama as a person. However, a more specific question about whether or not voters like the policies of President Obama shows that our new leader is not in nearly as positive a position as the seventy-nine percent (79%) personal popularity would indicate.
Just fifty-five percent (55%) of Americans say they like President Obama’s policies. This is still a solid majority, but the economic conditions in this country are still not improving, and these numbers show that Obama’s charismatic personality can only carry him so far. A time will come when Americans look for positive visible results and an improvement in the lives of they and their families. If President Obama and the Democrats cannot deliver such results, voters will be open to Republican alternatives.
Has the Republican Party and its leadership developed any alternative plans? If they have, Americans are not yet aware of it. At this point, only fourteen percent (14%) of American voters say they have heard a lot about Republican alternatives. Another thirty-two percent (32%) say they have heard at least “some” about Republican alternatives, but our experience tells us that a portion of the “some” response is voters who are just trying to save face and not appear uninformed to the person interviewing them. Even if you assume all the “some” voters are being truthful, this means that less than half (46%) of voters have seen anything substantial about a Republican alternative to the policies of President Obama.
Asking the Republican alternative question a little differently, only thirty-eight percent (38%) of the American voters we interviewed said they believe the Republican Party has even offered any credible policy alternatives to President Obama’s economic programs. According to our survey, a majority (52%) of American voters believe that Republicans currently have a policy of simply opposing whatever Obama proposes.
These voters may not be locked into Obama and the Democratic Party, but they are also not likely to quickly jump to the Republican Party unless they are given a reason to do so. Hoping for the country to continue to have major problems and rooting for President Obama to fail is not a legitimate strategy. The challenge for the Republicans Party as a whole, and especially for the individual candidates all over the country, is to come up with credible proposals of their own which communicate Republican ideals to voters in an understandable and convincing manner.