A few interesting polls out this morning show Ron Paul and George W. Bush within the margin of error against President Obama in hypothetical matchups. The first matchup is unlikely to happen, and the second one can’t, but both polls underscore the declining political fortunes of Obama.
Rasmussen finds Obama leading Paul by an insignificant 42 percent to 41 percent margin. While Obama is more popular among Democrats than Paul is among Republicans, Paul leads among unaaffiliated voters by 19 points.
Meanwhile, Public Policy Polling, a Democratic firm, finds that the public is now pretty evenly divided between Obama and the man whose unpopularity made his rise possible. The president leads his predecessor Bush by a narrow 48 percent to 46 percent. In this case, it’s more about voters returning to the typical ideological lines — with Republicans and conservative independents who became disenchanted with Bush during his second term supporting him over Obama.
These numbers suggest some peril for Democrats in making Bush a focus of their messaging this fall. A lot of folks who contributed to the former President’s low level of popularity now like Obama even less. Figuring out a way to make voters change their minds about the current President would be a much more effective strategy for Democrats than continuing to try to score points off the former one.
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