The Most Misleading Headline. Ever.
So, what’s happening today at the Washington Post?
Obama: The most polarizing president. Ever.
Wow. Ever. Like. Wow.
Now, before you trot out your favorite Blazing Saddles references, let’s have a look at the rumors behind the news:
For 2011, Obama’s third year in office, an average of 80 percent of Democrats approved of the job he was doing in Gallup tracking polls, as compared to 12 percent of Republicans who felt the same way. That’s a 68-point partisan gap, the highest for any president’s third year in office — ever.
Well, you can’t dispute the numb—
Wait. The highest for any president’s third year in office. Or, if you’d like that in bold, “The highest for any president’s third year in office.”
Can we break that down? Has Obama also set the polarization record for any president’s 857th day in office? Ever? Because that would be, y’know, historic.
While it’s easy to look at the numbers cited above and conclude that Obama has failed at his mission of bringing the country together…
Easy if you’re a fucking DC hack, but let’s set that aside. Because, look! Here’s some polling data that undermines the very headline:
G.W. Bush, 2004: 76-point gap.
G.W. Bush, 2005: 72-point gap.
G.W. Bush, 2006: 70-point gap.
Obama, 2010: 68-point gap.
So Obama doesn’t even take the Bronze for Polarizing Presidents. It’s only news — sorry, “news” — if you limit the range to Year 3, which happens to be Mission Accomplished for Shrub. George W. Bush doesn’t start taking five of the top ten slots until after Our Exceptional Nation realizes the shithole he dug for us.
And where did we find those stats? In the same fucking article. Which would have been a much better article had it skipped the Drudge-baiting headline and lede, and stuck to the broader — and much more relevant — context.