Just 17% of Americans believe Dubai Ports World should be allowed to purchase operating rights to several U.S. ports. A Rasmussen Reports survey found that 64% disagree and believe the sale should not be allowed....As anyone who hasn't spent the past five years in a coma will know, Bush has consistently trumped up the foreign dangers we face and consistently puffed up his own record as a danger-facer-downer. No matter what happened domestically -- the NCLB disaster, the 2003 blackout, the economic slump -- Bush's supposed strengths on national security always remained a saving grace at the polls.
From a political perspective, President Bush's national security credentials have clearly been tarnished due to the outcry over this issue. For the first time ever, Americans have a slight preference for Democrats in Congress over the President on national security issues. Forty-three percent (43%) say they trust the Democrats more on this issue today while 41% prefer the President.
The preference for the opposition party is small, but the fact that Democrats are even competitive on the national security front is startling. In Election 2002, the President guided his party to regain control of the Senate based almost exclusively on the national security issue. On Election Day that year, just 23% rated the economy as good or excellent, but the President's Party still emerged victorious.
But recently, we've seen a steady erosion of Bush's security credentials -- first, with the incompetent handling of Iraq and the inability to get Bin Laden; then, with the botched DHS response to Katrina that showed they couldn't even handle a disaster that they'd seen coming for weeks and even held a dress rehearsal for; and finally, the UAE port security screw-up, and all the light it's shed on how casually the administration handles the nuts and bolts of our national security infrastructure.
It took a while to shake Bush's ill-gained reputation as a strong defender of America, but we're finally here. The American people are starting to think the Democrats are a better option on national security, a trend that's only going to pick up speed as the Fighting Dems take to the campaign trail.
This could be a big year for the Dems. Gabby Hayes big.