“It’s a fact that unemployment has gone down and the stock market has gone up during the Obama administration. But GOP voters treat these things more as issues of opinion than issues of fact.”
It seems worth mentioning.
And while it’s one thing to rely on Benen, and another to sit so sternly on such a reliably obvious point―
If GOP voters want to make the case that Obama’s policies don’t deserve credit, fine. If they want to argue that there are other, more important metrics than unemployment and the stock market, no problem. If they want to suggest things would be even better if the country had adopted a right-wing agenda, we can at least have the conversation.
But the polling suggests Republicans prefer to pretend reality just isn’t true. It’s as if a form of cognitive dissonance is kicking in: the president is bad, falling unemployment is good, ergo unemployment must be higher, not lower.
―perhaps the problem here is the unfortunate regularity of Republican reliance on the “reality gap”.
And if the syllogism seems clumsy to the point of being nonsensical, yes, that is actually the point.
Yes, really. This is what Republicans have come to.
Meanwhile, as everyone marvels about cognitive dissonance and other dysfunctional neurotic symptoms among conservatives, it seems worth taking note of another, perhaps more obscure result in that same Public Policy Polling release:
-68% of voters support the EPA Clean Power Plan to 26% who are opposed. That includes 65/29 support from pivotal independent voters.
At some point, this issue is going to come up. It just seems this number will be worth remembering when the time comes.
Image note: President Obama speaks at the Greater Boston Labor Council Labor Day Breakfast on 7 September 2015. (Andrew Harnik/Associated Press)
Benen, Steve. “The persistence of the reality gap matters”. msnbc. 12 May 2016.
Public Policy Polling. “Ryan Disliked by Republicans; Trump Could Hurt Down Ballot”. 11 May 2016.