Thursday, January 07, 2010

Lieberman even more unpopular than Dodd

The news yesterday out of Connecticut was the Chris Dodd is retiring instead of running for re-election.

What is more interesting is that there is one politician in that state even Dodd could beat: his seatmate, Joe Lieberman.

PPP (D) released some more data from its polling in Connecticut (522 RVs, 1/4-5, MoE +/- 4.3%), showing a precipitous drop in Sen. Joe Lieberman's (I) approval rating. It now stands at just 25 percent, with 67 percent disapproving. By comparison, that's lower than even Chris Dodd's showing at 29 percent approval.

Digging deeper, PPP finds that 81 percent of Democrats disapprove of Lieberman. Among Republicans, 39 percent approve and 48 percent disapprove; among indies the split is 32 / 61. Lieberman is up again in 2012

Dodd of course has gotten smacked with his push to allow AIG executives to collect multimillion dollar bonuses even as the Federal treasury was spending billions to clean up the mess they made, and also for the question of whether his Countrywide mortgage may have gotten a preferred rate because he was too cozy with the banks and the mortgage industry. But even with that baggage, Dodd is still more popular in his homestate than Joe of the 'Party of Joe.' And until the health care vote, Lieberman hadn't made a lot of waves. What has clearly made the difference was his waffling and watering down of health care legislation (note also that while he has net unfavorables with everyone, he's the closest to breaking even with Republicans.)


RoseZ said...

Lieberman won here via Republicans after he switced to "independent" following his defeat by Ned Lamont.

Lamont has become a disappointment here w/his attempt to run for guv. He's using the same, senatorial platform from his run against Joe. He doesn't have a chance.

Dan Malloy is the Dem frontrunner as a Dem gubernatorial candidate. Mary Glassman may pull ahead with her recent announcement. She was actually Dan's running mate in 2006.

My son worked for them back then. He works for Dan this time around. Oddly, Mary's announcement to run for guv was just one day before the Dodd announcement and our AG stating he will run for Dodd's seat. Some think Mary would have preferred to take Blumental's spot as AG. Timing is everything.

Here are some local links to the CT buzz.

(Sorry. I have forgotten HTML code!).


Anonymous said...

Federal treasury?! WTF!? Do you mean the Federal Reserve? or the Treasury Dept.? They are separate institutions. Blaming the fed displays gross ignorance of the issues surrounding the financial crisis. Yes, the fed's monetary policies contributed to the crisis, and, yes, their anemic response did little to mitigate the problem once it became apparent. But the fed's contribution is quite minor compared to that of the other contributors.

Blaming treasury is closer, but still misses the mark. Treasury did not cause the problem, although their response greatly exacerbated it. Investors (or "the markets" if you prefer) hate uncertainty. Paulson's grossly inconsistent policy [liquidation (& sale of assets) for Bear Stearns and Merril Lynch, bail-outs for AIG and Goldman Sachs, bankrupcy for Lehman Brothers] created absolute uncertainly. If I know everyone will be bailed out, I will value the investments accordingly; if I know everyone will be allowed to fail, I will value those investments accordingly. Under Paulson's policy, it was impossible to place a value on investments. But Paulson's actions came only after the companies were in trouble, making a bad situation worse, but not creating the situation.

Gov't regulators who didn't and the various investment firms also contributed. However, the lion's share of the blame falls to Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae and the politicians (from both sides of the aisle) who drove their policies. Freddie and Fannie (F&F), under pressure from congress, lowered their standards on the loans they would purchase to the point that they were buying sub-prime mortgages. By 2007, F&F together held more sub-prime mortgages than all the private institutions combined. If not for F&F, the financial crisis would have been less than half of what it was. Indeed, given that the private institutions were only responding to F&F's lead into the sub-prime market, it is doubtful those private firms would have become as involved in the market as they ultimately were.

Ultimately, it was politicians pulling the strings, democrats under their "affordable housing" initiative and republicans under their "ownership society." To his credit, former Pres. Bush did foresee the problems with F&F and called for investigations and reform. Unfortunately, few in congress had the backbone to risk the political fallout of tightened loan standards. Two figures, however, stand out for their vocal and vigorous defense of F&F: Sen. Dodd and Rep. Frank. They vociferously declared that F&F were fiscally sound and statements to the contrary were scare mongering intended to harm their affordable housing initiative. In the aftermath of the financial crisis, they have blasted F&F, but refused to accept any responsibility for their own role in the debacle.

I for one am happy to see Sen. Dodd retiring. If only Rep. Frank would follow suit.