February 12th, 2010
05:52 PM ET
5 years ago

Poll: Bush still blamed for economy

More Americans blame the Bush administration for the nation's economic troubles than the Obama administration, according to a new poll.
More Americans blame the Bush administration for the nation's economic troubles than the Obama administration, according to a new poll.

(CNN) - More than a year after President George W. Bush left office, more Americans continue to blame his administration over any other entity for the nation's economic woes, according to a new poll.

In a New York Times/CBS News survey out Friday, 31 percent of Americans said the Bush administration is at fault for the current state of the economy while only 7 percent pointed their finger at President Obama and his team.

An additional 23 percent said the fault lies with Wall Street institutions while 13 percent assign the blame to Congress. Nearly 10 percent said the blame lies with all of them.

In a CNN/Opinion Research poll released last November, the public appeared split on who should be blamed if economic conditions don't approve: 47 percent said Bush and congressional Republicans while 45 percent said Obama and congressional Democrats.

"The public still tends to blame the Republicans for current economic conditions," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "But looking forward is another matter. Americans think the GOP is responsible for getting us into this mess, but they think both parties are responsible for getting us out of it."

The poll, conducted February 5-10, interviewed 1,084 Americans and carries a sampling error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.


Filed under: George W. Bush • Polls • Popular Posts • President Obama
soundoff (299 Responses)
  1. Thank you Massachusetts

    The blame lies with all who have abandoned the fundamentally sound principles and values this country was founded on. We've gone woefully astray as demonstrated when the whistle blower Brooksley Born was silenced. Our country will be in shambles until/unless the crooks are tossed out of p,ower but only God can do that so ya better start praying. .Oh....right.....we aren't aloud to talk about Him in public anymore.....hmmmm.

    February 12, 2010 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  2. Wisconsonite - Vote for Consumer Protection Regulation of the Financial Industry

    It's encouraging to know that at least 31% of the American public has some intelligence and common sense!

    February 12, 2010 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  3. Enough is Enough

    There is plenty blame to go around. It all stared back to when Carter was president and the government's social engineering that demanded that banks make loans to people less likely to pay them back. Then the government bought the loans Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Both parties are to blame the dems more so.

    February 12, 2010 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  4. Albert R., L.A., CA

    Bush is only partly to blame. Reagan’s “Get government off of our backs,” deregulation (lawlessness) of the financial institutions allowed the global corporations to take it all. Then there is Reagan’s “Horse-and-sparrow economics” promising if we feed a horse enough oats (tax cuts for the rich) some are bound to pass through to the high-end and trickle-down onto the trail for the sparrows. Well, if any oats ever did trickle-down they all got lost in the Bushes; the George Bushes. We got Bushwhacked with the Persian Gulf War and the Occupation of Iraq!

    February 12, 2010 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  5. frank

    the dems have done a great job blaming Bush
    the non ignorant know..it was not him but the policies ans lake of oversight of the dems congress.....
    Bush averted a bigger problem by impementing tarp...someting obama followed

    February 12, 2010 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  6. jgzeger

    The public is correct in assigning blame to the Bush admininstration and Wall Street for the recession and not Obama and the Democrats, regardless of what GOP leaders say to the contrary.

    February 12, 2010 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  7. Obama Victim

    please keep in mind this is a New York Times/CBS.........two extreme left wing entities...poll.............take these numbers with a hige grain of salt......these numbers seem inconsistent with Obama's approval rating which has slipped below 50%

    February 12, 2010 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  8. bj, Texas

    Where did you conduct your poll CNN? Downtown San Francisco in Pelosi's neighborhood?

    February 12, 2010 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  9. NVa Native

    Only a complete fool or out-right liar would try to blame the current President for the recent demise of the American economy.
    All of the economic crisis is the result of Republican politicians and their policies. And the media outlets who kept the public ignorant of these same politicians and their policies are to blame as well.

    February 12, 2010 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  10. Henry Miller, Libertarian

    Yes, the Bush administration was wildly irresponsible, but no presidential administration can spend money without the cooperation and approval of Congress.

    The US government has long since ceased to work on behalf of the American people. It's become a self-interested entity the objectives of which are the protection of the careers of its members, elected or otherwise, and the perpetuation of its own powers.

    Government itself is the problem, not any particular party.

    February 12, 2010 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  11. mjm

    31% of Americans can think what they want. It doesn't make it true.

    The housing market bubble caused this mess. That's Freddie, Fannie, Frank and Dodd.

    It wasn't Bush that said he wanted to roll the dice.....and I'm pretty sure Bush wasn't the one romantically involved with a Fannie Mae executive.

    February 12, 2010 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  12. Caesar the Great

    Economy humming along nicely. Democrats take over Congress in 2006. Economy takes a downturn. Yep all Bushes fault.

    February 12, 2010 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  13. stevegee

    Lliberal Democrats are responsible for the Great Recession. They're the ones who pushed the Community Reinvestment Act under Carter and Clinton - great idea, let's give mortgages to people who can't afford them, NOT.

    Then the lenders are stuck with junk, and have to devise ways to make their money back. And what did we get? The greatest gambling casino ever via Mortgage-Backed Securities, Derivatives, CDOs, and so on.

    You wanna blame somebody, blame the real culprits: Carter, Clinton, Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, and countless other good-for-nothing politicans.

    February 12, 2010 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  14. Tanja

    That is because he is to blame for the economy!!!!!!!

    February 12, 2010 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  15. NYC REPUB

    I'm so glad to see that Americans know what time it is...........Yes, the Bush admin walked out the WH passing off the most brutal economic conditions to this country and it's new President. Anybody who is a honest person, could have forseen that the extrememity of what happened in the fall of 2008, and the onslaught of job losses that followed until April 2009, was a recipe for the high unemployment we have now.........We went from losing 700,000 jobs a month to 40,000-85,000 jobs a month.......from 10.2% – 9.7%.......This new President is working his keester off......and he still has my support........I'm not a fair weather voter.......I contemplate long and hard over Presidential votes.........My conscience is clear, and I know I picked the right person for the Presidency.....Besides, I choose HOPE over FEAR any day of the week!!!!!! Go America Go!!!!!!!! We are making a comeback.

    February 12, 2010 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  16. Ben in Texas

    America knows whose fault it is that we're in such an economic mess. Now it's time for the right-wingers-in-denial on this board to come to grips with it. Four and the Door, mjm, Willy Brown, others? Anything you'd like to confess?

    While you're at it, wanna rethink the past 8 years of support for Bush/Cheney in regard to 2 costly, never-ending wars, torture, lying, illegal surveillance, re-distributing wealth to the rich, appointing activist judges, and other traitorous acts? Or, are you content to keep your heads in the sand while the Repugnants continue to bury you?

    February 12, 2010 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  17. The lonely Libertarian of Liverpool NY

    You bet Pres. Bush and the GOP are to blame, but so are the democrats both were in power!
    Excuse me! What is the difference between these two parties? All I know is both have had a monopoly on my freedom for my entire lifetime (53YRS), and year after year I work and struggle and get no where. Every year the taxes and fees to feed the massive Government go up and the value of the Dollar goes down.
    How can you folks continue to vote for these people who refuse to represent you? How can you vote for these two parties who have done nothing to your right to individual Liberty?

    February 12, 2010 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  18. notfooledbydistractions

    Bush and the republicans should be blamed. It was, afterall, the policies of the Bush admin and the lock-step support of the republican party that lead us into this economic disaster.

    The American public isn't as stupid as the media and pundits believe.

    February 12, 2010 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  19. deb (long island)

    Absolutely that President Bush led us to this present economy and the Republicans stood by. For ten years all perks went to the mega rich while the middle class just about disappeared. President Obama and his advisors delivered us from the brink of depression and although there is still a lot to do, we are headed in the right direction. The Republicans however, keep playing politics and securing their reelections. Perhaps the people whom they represent should send them the ultimatums. Perhaps John Boehner would be more in touch with his constituency if he spent less time tanning or on the golf course.

    February 12, 2010 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  20. S. Montgomery

    Here is what I do not understand, the Democrats have had the majority in both in the House and the Senate since 2007 the legislation that went through was passed by them so how is the economy all Bush's fault?

    February 12, 2010 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  21. Chipster

    Well, honestly, the fact that he started a costly war that wasn't necessary and is still costing us a fortune has not changed. The borrowing and spending that was done for 8 years, rather than asking Americans to step up and pay for the 9/11 attacks, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and increased healthcare costs continues to haunt us.

    Pretending that those economic policies didn't dig a huge hole for us doesn't serve any purpose but neither does whining about it. We must remember and learn from the mistakes but we must move forward.

    The economy is Obama's to deal with now but how much he can do about it, with constant opposition to everything he plans, remains to be seen.

    It's our own fault that politicians are unwilling to ask us to take responsibility. We don't vote for them if they do. We are at fault.

    February 12, 2010 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  22. Henry

    What were the actual questions asked in the poll ?

    February 12, 2010 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  23. katiec

    Of course the American people continue to blame Bush and the republicans. What they did to us and our country will take years to overcome, if ever.
    What is just as bad, the republicans continue to take no responsibility for the diasters they created and are obstructing everything they can to get our country back on it's feet. Their goals of destroy our president, party first, totally support big business and win at any cost
    are taking them down the road to becoming our countries most disgraceful, irresponsible, evil party in the history of our country.
    Americans, we cannot allow a party who puts personal gains over the survival of us and our country, whose ego, hypocrasy, fear mongering and sewer tactics represent us, as they are not.

    February 12, 2010 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  24. kls

    President Bush and the Republican held Congress took a balanced federal budget and spent like our taxpayer's money grew on the White House trees. Their answer to balance the budget was to tell the American public to go out and spend. Then to deregulate the financial/banking industry and look the other way while companies went wild. The GOP still thinks big business will let "their" money flow down to the average hard working American. It has been proven over and over again the money stops at their own pockets!!! Yes, President Bush and the GOP are responsible for our current economic crisis.

    February 12, 2010 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  25. GOP = "I hoe he fails"

    Yes, you see, one aspect of our democratic, free-enterprise system is that President are economic dictators. If the economy goes down, it's purely and solely the President who is to blame.

    February 12, 2010 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
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