Sunday, July 02, 2006

Poll Shows GOP Weak, But Improving

This is the LATimes take on the latest Bloomberg poll:

President Bush's job approval rating is up slightly, but discontent over the Iraq war, especially among women, is continuing to boost Democratic prospects in the struggle for control of Congress, a Times/Bloomberg poll has found.

Bush's job approval rating edged up to 41%, his highest since January in the poll. But Democrats held a formidable advantage, 49% to 35%, when registered voters were asked which party they intended to support in fall congressional elections.

...However, beneath the large Democrat lead on the November ballot test, the poll offered potential warnings for the party.

On a variety of questions — including satisfaction with Bush's handling of terrorism and the likelihood of progress in Iraq — it showed modest but perceptible movement in the president's direction since the last Times/Bloomberg survey, in April. Also, the share of Americans who viewed the Democratic Party favorably declined. And creating a check on Bush seemed more important than providing an opportunity for Democrats to many poll respondents who said they intended to back that party's candidates for Congress.

"It's not that I'm for the Democrats specifically," said Carol Shulman, a communications professor from Oxford, Ohio. "I'm for more of a balance of power."

The Times/Bloomberg poll, supervised by Times Polling Director Susan Pinkus, interviewed 1,321 adults (including 1,170 registered voters) from Saturday through Tuesday. It had a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

A quick glance at most of the recent polls (over at the indispensable Polling Report), shows that most track improvement for the GOP.

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