Friday, July 24, 2009


For the first time, President Obama's approval rating has fallen below 50 percent, according to the daily Rasmussen poll. This comes after he's been pretty consistently in the mid-50s in terms of overall approval, and the precipitous dip comes just two days after his high-stakes press conference on health care.

Peter Baker at the New York Times thinks Obama is overusing the media. (Hat tip: Veronique de Rugy at NRO's The Corner)

In the past four days, Mr. Obama gave “exclusive” interviews to Jim Lehrer of PBS, Katie Couric of CBS and Meredith Vieira of NBC. He gave two interviews to The Washington Post on one day, one to the editorial page editor and one to news reporters. He held a conference call with bloggers. His hourlong session in the East Room on Wednesday night was his second news conference of the day. And on Thursday, he invited Terry Moran of ABC to spend the day with him for a “Nightline” special.

Politicos on both sides of the aisle are bewildered, Baker writes.

“I’m really perplexed. It’s unbelievable,” said Karen Hughes, Mr. Bush’s White House counselor. “They’ve taken his greatest political asset — his gifts as a communicator — and totally diluted them. It’s been especially notable in the last couple weeks.”

Some Democrats said Mr. Obama should worry about frittering away the novelty of his presence. “It’s a risk of overexposure,” said Joe Trippi, a political consultant. “If you use it all up on health care, you may not be able to use it on something else. But if you’re going to risk using it all up, this is the one to risk it on."

This is not to mention that we couldn't watch a baseball all-star game last week without seeing Obama preen for the cameras or spending the better part of an inning watching him sit there with the broadcasters rather than watching the game.

Any president is going to get a lot of face time on TV. But one has to wonder, just as people used to talk about "Clinton fatigue" and "Bush fatigue," when we're going to start hearing the expression "Obama fatigue."

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