November 15th, 2010
05:10 PM ET
10 years ago

CNN Poll: Image of Bush on the rise

Washington (CNN) - Americans' views of George W. Bush's presidency have improved since he left office, according to a new national poll. But a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Monday also indicates that four in ten continue to say that Bush was a poor president, and another third rate him as average.

In January, 2009, at the end of his second term, one in five said that Bush was a good president or one of the greatest. That number is up to 28 percent now, indicating how much Bush's stock has risen with the passage of time.

Full Results after the jump:

Full results (pdf)

"But four in ten persist in calling him a poor president - higher than the number who felt that way in previous polls about Bush's father, Bill Clinton, or Ronald Reagan - which shows how much ground Bush has yet to make up in the public's mind, if not in the history books," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.

The survey's release comes one day after the former president was interviewed by CNN's Candy Crowley in a special edition of State of the Union.

The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted November 11-14, with 1,014 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.

Check out CNN's new Polling Center, which provides the most comprehensive polling data of any news organization in the political landscape.

- CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report

Filed under: CNN Polls • Polls • President George W. Bush
soundoff (37 Responses)
  1. stufit

    As well it should be, he was courageous, honest and dignified. You notice even now, he will not comment on the idiocy of the current incumbent, in spite of constantly being assailed by he and the other left wing nuts. Compared to his whining, sniveling, coward we currently have, Bush was and continues to be brave.

    November 15, 2010 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  2. Billy

    On the rise? Yeh, like stench that rises from something rotten.

    November 15, 2010 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  3. Ben in Texas

    My opinion of mini-Bush will never change. He's a war criminal, pure and simple. And I do mean simple. He was the best candidate for impeachment and jail of any president in history. It is testimony to the lack of backbone among Democrats that he was never impeached. The fact that he is still free is a crime in itself.

    November 15, 2010 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  4. Balmorhea

    Personally he is a great guy and so is Obama. Neither of them is a good President. Both Obama with his the hyper partisan leftist policies and Bush with his out of control spending the last two and half years hurt the country. Both of them ignored the other party and that is the kiss of dealth in the end because you look like the President of half the country instead of the whole country.

    November 15, 2010 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  5. Bush Sucks

    Stufit, you've got to be kidding, right? BRAVE? You mean, by using high tech weaponry to kill women and children in Iraq? Funny, when Osama bin Laden does it, we call it "terrorism", when we do it (except on a much, much bigger scale), you call it "Brave". Odd that.

    November 15, 2010 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  6. PalmReader

    There seems to be a very real CNN republican bias lately. Almost as if those in charge have their talking points ready weeks in advance, regardless of what is actually on point within America. Bush's media blitz was a flop, succeeding only in bringing the wounds that his irresponsible presidency created out in the open to fester once again. From the two wars, to Katrina, ... the financial meltdown, to TARP, he has no remorse. Quite content to allow the blame of all our ills as a Nation to be put solely on Obama's shoulders. What an awful, awful man Bush the Second truly is.

    November 15, 2010 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  7. Kenneth Close

    President's legacy related to time but in reading different Bio's of other President's I find the personality has as much to do with the Legacy. You can have the worst rated president I have found who got the most legislation through rated low while a popular President with little to show for the presidency is rated high by history. Historian's seem to rattle back in forth with each other on history.Ask ten people to explain the founding fathers intentions with the Constitution?

    November 15, 2010 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  8. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    We'll see how much Bush's popularity has risen if his brother Jeb tries to make a run, that would be the true measuring stick.

    November 15, 2010 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  9. hobart

    Although I'm opposed to just about that President Bush did during his Presidency, I thought he showed a likable human side during his recent interview, especially when he shared his struggle with alcohol.

    November 15, 2010 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  10. normajean

    This is the second time today that I have read someone calling our president "partisan".I'd' like to know where they get that! From the time he was inaugurated our president tried to work with the Repubs and was turned against from the beginning. They didn't get the "Party of No" for nothing. He got absolutely NO cooperation from the other side and they have threatened to dump almost everything he has done. YOU THiNK THE REPUBS ARE BI- PARTISAN? You need a dictionary!!!

    November 15, 2010 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  11. Patrick

    America, where image is more important than accomplishment. It's no accident that Bush remained out of sight until after the mid-term elections. Republicans knew that any reminder of his 8 years would keep independents leaning towards Democrats. The past election proved that most voters aren't knowledgeable enough or smart enough to understand the concept of cause and effect. It's easier to break a national economy than it is to fix one, and in both cases it takes more than 18 months.

    November 15, 2010 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  12. Tony California

    The facts reflect a President whose actions were blatant mistakes detrimentally effecting this country.....period. Regardless of his personality, George Bush left office with the biggest deficit this nation has ever seen a (record breaking $5 trillion deficit). Many of the Bush fan base attempt to delusionally associate his economic failures of this country with a Democratic Congress. Except, his Coporate tax cut policies were only passed with a simple Republican majority of 50 Senate votes and a tie breaking vote from Dick Cheney in 2001-2003. His war against Iraq wasn't for purposes of threating the US. Instead, it was a war of repossesion for foreclosure on oil debt within the cloak of terrorism hysteria. Regardless of rescent attempts to ressurrect his dying image of dignity and sincerity, those same desparate attempts are becoming more preposterous.

    November 15, 2010 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  13. Clwyd

    He will always be remembered for his 19% approval rating for me. He would be even lower than that if anybody would ask me!

    November 15, 2010 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  14. GOP Scorched Earth Politics

    Yes from the worst to one of the worst? Give us a break CNN. We all know he was awful and if the Dem's had a spine they would put him along with his henchman Cheney on criminal trial. Iraq was a con-job and everyone around the world knows it.
    Darrell Issa is trying to set some smokescreens for cover. Good luck with that.

    November 15, 2010 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  15. Lynn

    GWB is as likeable as a snake. Don't trust him, he will always do what serves him and the rest of the Bush's best. They only serve the master, Mama Barbara Bush

    November 15, 2010 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  16. William

    OMG. How quickly we forget!

    November 15, 2010 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  17. shoegazer

    Worst President ever.Mainly due to the fact that he was in way over his head and was nothing more than the de facto puppet for the most corrupt adminstration in the countries history.

    November 15, 2010 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  18. Tinkers Dam

    Norma Jean............Obama said it himself.."Republicans are welcome to come along, but they'll have to ride in the back seat.." Yeah....sounds just like a poster child for bi-partisanship.

    November 15, 2010 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  19. MarkieBee

    @Patrick...the best, most well-reasoned post on CNN in days if not weeks. Bravo! @Stufit: Bush was brave? LOL! He attacked maybe the 10th biggest threat to our national security only because Iraq had oil. Real brave. Honest!?! Obama told you everything he'd do and he's tried to do every single one of those. Bush blabbered about compassionate conservatism...whatever that is. What an oxymoron from that moron. Bush II was the worst president in our history. We had some do-nothings, but Bush actively did things to damage this country and that makes him much, much worse than the other 43.

    November 15, 2010 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  20. w l jones

    Some time thing is beyond a sitting president control ,unfortunate the recession we having today is built in the system and Mr. Bush had very little to do with it, nor the present president. In ecomonic , its call pull and push which will balance it self out over time.

    November 15, 2010 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  21. ThinkAgain

    GW Bush was anything but brave – he's been hiding out since he left office because he knows he can't defend his tried-and-failed policies!

    And regarding the old saw that he "kept us safe," may I remind you of the August 6, 2001 Presidential Daily Briefing that explicity warned of al Qaeda attacking the US using airplanes; a briefing GW chose to ignore!

    Besides, Cheney and Rove were in charge those 8 years; Bush was just a silly, dry alcoholic puppet, used to reel in the ignorant right-wing guns/god/gays born again vote.

    November 15, 2010 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  22. Mark

    Clinton signed of on the banking reform
    Clinton ignored Osama bin Laden
    Clinton fought the Newt Gingrich GOP on accepting a balanced budget.

    And now we have Obama..

    November 15, 2010 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  23. Adalbert

    Americans just love war criminals.

    November 15, 2010 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  24. Oy Vey Az

    A skunk up close and personal stinks to the high heavens. Two years later you've forgotten about most of it ... but believe me ... that skunk still stinks as much today as it did two years ago. What is all this better "polls numbers" bull-puckie about anyway? Is this some kind of new Republican very-high-nasal-colonic being pushed up you know where.

    November 15, 2010 06:35 pm at 6:35 pm |
  25. Bob Hamilton

    This cold be used as a very simple IQ test. Anyone rating Bush as anything over worst ever would fail the test. True fact.

    November 15, 2010 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
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