How the Mighty Have Fallen: Snyder’s Approval Ratings Have Fallen the Furthest of All GOP Govs
A2Politico has been tracking the approval ratings of Michigan’s Republican Governor Rick Snyder. In November 2010, Rick Snyder breezed past Democratic candidate Virg Bernero, and won the race for governor with 58 percent of the vote. After Governor Snyder presented his budget to the Michigan Legislature, the wheels began to come off of his PR cart.
According to a piece published in Mother Jones on May 31, 2011, Michigan’s Republican Governor is neck-and-neck with Ohio’s Governor John Kasich, Wisconsin’s Scott Walker and Florida’s Rick Scott as the American governor with the lowest approval ratings.
According to Mother Jones:
Florida’s Rick Scott and Ohio’s John Kasich are currently the leading contenders for the title of the most unpopular governor in America, according to a recent Public Policy Polling (PPP) survey. (A mere 32 percent of respondents approve of Scott, while just 33 percent support Kasich. A separate Quinnipiac poll puts Scott’s approval even lower, at 29 percent.) Michigan’s Rick Snyder is struggling with a 33 percent approval rating, and in Wisconsin, 43 percent approve of Scott Walker, PPP found—down 3 points from February and 9 from Election Day 2010.
On March 3, 2011 A2Politico posted a piece about a poll conducted by the Freep in which it was reported that 27 percent of Michigan voters polled disapproved of Michigan Governor Rick Snyder’s performance. In particular, during his first two months in office, Snyder had lost the confidence of independents and Democrats who had supported his candidacy in November 2010.
According to the early-March 2011 poll reported by the Detroit Free Press:
“The huge popularity Snyder had in polls taken in late January sank considerably. Forty-four percent view Snyder favorably, and 27% view him unfavorably. In January, 59% viewed him favorably and 8% unfavorably. That was after Republican Snyder’s inauguration and his well-received State of the State address. Since then, he presented his budget plan Feb. 17, which features a sweeping reduction of business taxes and higher taxes for many individuals.”
That poll of 600 Michigan residents was conducted by EPIC/MRA of Lansing. Bernie Porn works for EPIC and had this to say about the results: “Voters’ assessment of Snyder appears to have shifted quickly and sharply. The shift was most pronounced among Democrats and independents, who apparently don’t share the governor’s view that his budget and tax plan represent shared sacrifice. Snyder’s favorable rating among independents fell from 40% in January to 26%.”
On March 22, 2011, the Detroit News reported that a poll, conducted by Public Policy Polling, which surveyed 502 Michigan voters from March 18-20, found that Snyder’s approval rating had fallen sharply in just two weeks. Half of the voters surveyed disapproved of the Michigan Governor’s job performance. Officials at the polling company told the Detroit News that the margin of error for the survey was plus or minus 4.4 percentage points.
Snyder responded to news of growing voter dissatisfaction in his job performance somewhat predictably. He was quoted as saying, “What mattered was what happened in November and I’m following through on what I campaigned on. I’m proud to say I said a number of things in the campaign and I’m following through. I believe over time the citizens of Michigan are going to be right there with me.”
The May 31st Mother Jones piece also draws on polling data provided by Public Policy Polling, and it appears from the latest polling numbers that Michigan residents are not “right there” with Snyder. In fact, Michigan residents are increasingly disapproving of Snyder’s far-right attacks on unions, the unemployed, the working class, the working poor, education—all in order to fund his largesse toward business, which will benefit from an estimated $1 billion in tax breaks.
Bill Schneider is a long time political analyst for CNN. Monthly, he provides insights into the “pols, polls, and issues that shape our political landscape,” according to CNN’s web site. Nationally, the discussion concerning Snyder and his fellow Republican governors who swept into power in November 2010, has turned from Snyder as a governor whose “failures,” have been the result of “hubris,” as right-leaning think tank pundit Norman Ornstein recently wrote in an op-ed published in the Washington Post. Now, national political heavy-hitters are looking at the fact that tens of millions of voters in swing states throughout the country are intensely dissatisfied with their Republican governors. The list of states in which Republican Governors’s approval ratings have tanked is a collection of electoral votes that could sweep President Barack Obama back into power in 2012.
Robert Schostak, Chair of the Michigan Republican Party told a gathering of Washtenaw County Republican donors at a recent fundraiser for the 15th District Republicans at which Governor Snyder was the keynote speaker, that one of the Michigan GOP’s most important goals in 2012 was to deliver Michigan to the party’s presidential hopeful.
National political analysts posit that not only is this scenario growing unlikely, Republican Governor Rick Snyder could, almost single-handedly, deliver Michigan to Barack Obama in 2012. That is, if Rick Snyder is still in office in 2012. In April, an effort to recall Michigan’s governor and 20 Republican members of the Michigan legislature was launched—an effort that includes 52nd District representative Mark Ouimet.
In his June 2011 newsletter, Bill Schneider presented a look at just how far the mighty have fallen. The chart is titled, “A Taste of Republican Governance.” It should be titled, “A Taste of Eating Crow.” Schneider looked at the percentage of votes captured by the Republican governors elected in 2010, and compared that number to their current job approval ratings. The chart shows that of the eight Republican governors elected in 2010 in 2012 “battleground states,” Michigan governor Rick Snyder’s popularity has dropped the most precipitously of all of them. A2Politico reported on June 1, 2011 that Michigan’s governor was tied for the dubious title of most unpopular governor in the nation.
You can view Schneider’s chart below:
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