From heading the headlines you'd think that Republicans were poised to take over the government in 2010. They keep talking about 'Obama's plummeting approval ratings,' or about 'crumbling support,' or various other ways of saying the same thing.
Only that isn't true, and it hasn't been true in at least six weeks.
It is true that between about the last week of June and mid August the President dropped about eight percent in his approval rating, which had been running around 60%in most polls.
A funny thing has happened since then, however for those naysayers who only want to report on his 'declining numbers.'
The funny thing is that according to the RCP average the polls have practically not changed at all in about six weeks. On August 18, the President's approval ran at about 52.0% and his disapproval number was 41.0%. Today it was 52.5% to 40.5% approval-- no change (a half a percent move in the President's direction is not enough to be statistically significant, even in a 'poll of polls' as the RCP average is.) Moreover, the President has enjoyed at least a bare majority supporting him every single day since the start of his term. His disapproval number, which peaked at 44% a couple of weeks ago on September 13, has now dropped by a statistically significant 3.5%.
I know, I know. "President maintains a solid lead in the polls" makes for more boring news copy than "President's poll numbers drop like a rock." But if I read one more story about the President'd declining popularity I think I'm going to puke-- mainly because it is categorically not true.