Question:

What US President had the lowest approval rating at any given point in history? (I know it wasn't Bush, he's 2nd)?

Answer:

Harry S. Truman holds the record, at 22% (2/9-14/1952 -- during the Korean War). George W. Bush has the second lowest at 24%.

More Info:

Harry S. Truman (May 8, 1884 – December 26, 1972) was the 33rd President of the United States (1945–1953). The final running mate of President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1944, Truman succeeded to the presidency on April 12, 1945, when Roosevelt died after months of declining health. Under Truman, the U.S. successfully concluded World War II; in the aftermath of the conflict, tensions with the Soviet Union increased, marking the start of the Cold War.

Truman was born in Missouri, and spent most of his youth on his family's farm. During World War I, Truman served in combat in France as an artillery officer in his National Guard unit. After the war, he briefly owned a haberdashery and joined the Democratic Party political machine of Tom Pendergast in Kansas City, Missouri. He was first elected to public office as a county official, and in 1935 became U.S. senator. He gained national prominence as head of the wartime Truman Committee, which exposed waste, fraud, and corruption in wartime contracts.

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The United States is a federal constitutional republic, in which the President of the United States (the head of state and head of government), Congress, and judiciary share powers reserved to the national government, and the federal government shares sovereignty with the state governments.

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This article presents the historical development and role of political parties in United States politics, and outlines more extensively the significant modern political parties. Throughout most of its history, American politics have been dominated by a two-party system. However, the United States Constitution has always been silent on the issue of political parties; at the time it was signed in 1787, there were no parties in the nation. Indeed, no nation in the world had voter-based political parties. The need to win popular support in a republic led to the American invention of political parties in the 1790s. Americans were especially innovative in devising new campaign techniques that linked public opinion with public policy through the party.

The Bush family is a prominent American family. Along with many members who have been successful bankers and businessmen, across generations the family includes two U.S. Senators, one Supreme Court Justice, two Governors and two Presidents (one of the two presidents also served as Vice President). George Herbert Walker Bush and Barbara Pierce Bush have been married for 68 years, holding the record for the longest-married presidential couple. Peter Schweizer, author of a biography of the family, has described the Bushes as "the most successful political dynasty in American history". According to some online sources, the Bush family is of primarily English and German descent.

The United States of America (USA), commonly referred to as the United States (US), America, or simply the States, is a federal republic consisting of 50 states, 16 territories, and a federal district. The 48 contiguous states and the federal district of Washington, D.C., are in central North America between Canada and Mexico. The state of Alaska is the northwestern part of North America and the state of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific. The country also has five populated and nine unpopulated territories in the Pacific and the Caribbean. The largest of these territories are Puerto Rico and the American Virgin Islands which are an official part of the United States. At 3.79 million square miles (9.83 million km2) in total and with around 316 million people, the United States is the fourth-largest country by total area and third largest by population. It is one of the world's most ethnically diverse and multicultural nations, the product of large-scale immigration from many countries. The geography and climate of the United States is also extremely diverse, and it is home to a wide variety of wildlife.

Paleo-indians migrated from Asia to what is now the U.S. mainland around 15,000 years ago, with European colonization beginning in the 16th century. The United States emerged from 13 British colonies located along the Atlantic seaboard. Disputes between Great Britain and these colonies led to the American Revolution. On July 4, 1776, delegates from the 13 colonies unanimously issued the Declaration of Independence. The ensuing war ended in 1783 with the recognition of independence of the United States from the Kingdom of Great Britain, and was the first successful war of independence against a European colonial empire. The current Constitution was adopted on September 17, 1787. The first 10 amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, were ratified in 1791 and guarantee many fundamental civil rights and freedoms.

Harry S. Truman (May 8, 1884 – December 26, 1972) was the 33rd President of the United States (1945–1953). The final running mate of President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1944, Truman succeeded to the presidency on April 12, 1945, when Roosevelt died after months of declining health. Under Truman, the U.S. successfully concluded World War II; in the aftermath of the conflict, tensions with the Soviet Union increased, marking the start of the Cold War.

Truman was born in Missouri, and spent most of his youth on his family's farm. During World War I, Truman served in combat in France as an artillery officer in his National Guard unit. After the war, he briefly owned a haberdashery and joined the Democratic Party political machine of Tom Pendergast in Kansas City, Missouri. He was first elected to public office as a county official, and in 1935 became U.S. senator. He gained national prominence as head of the wartime Truman Committee, which exposed waste, fraud, and corruption in wartime contracts.

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George Walker Bush (born July 6, 1946) is an American politician and businessman who served as the 43rd President of the United States of America from 2001 to 2009 and the 46th Governor of Texas from 1995 to 2000. The eldest son of Barbara and George H. W. Bush, he was born in New Haven, Connecticut. After graduating from Yale University in 1968 and Harvard Business School in 1975, Bush worked in oil businesses. He married Laura Welch in 1977 and ran unsuccessfully for the House of Representatives shortly thereafter. He later co-owned the Texas Rangers baseball team before defeating Ann Richards in the 1994 Texas gubernatorial election. Bush was elected president in 2000 after a close and controversial election, becoming the fourth president to be elected while receiving fewer popular votes nationwide than his opponent. Bush is the second president to have been the son of a former president, the first being John Quincy Adams (with the other familial presidential relations being grandfather-grandson of the Harrisons, as well as the Roosevelts being 5th cousins). He is also the brother of Jeb Bush, former Governor of Florida.

Eight months into Bush's first term as president, the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks occurred. In response, Bush announced the War on Terror, an international military campaign which included the war in Afghanistan launched in 2001 and the war in Iraq launched in 2003. In addition to national security issues, Bush also promoted policies on the economy, health care, education, social security reform, and amending the Constitution to disallow same-sex marriage. He signed into law broad tax cuts, the PATRIOT Act, the No Child Left Behind Act, the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act, Medicare prescription drug benefits for seniors, and funding for the AIDS relief program known as PEPFAR. Bush announced the U.S. would not implement the Kyoto Protocol on global warming that had been negotiated by the Clinton Administration in 1997, and agreed to by 178 other countries, but never ratified by the U.S. Senate. His tenure saw national debates on immigration, Social Security, electronic surveillance, and enhanced interrogation techniques.

George Herbert Walker Bush (born June 12, 1924) is an American politician who served as the 41st President of the United States (1989–1993). A Republican, he had previously served as the 43rd Vice President of the United States (1981–1989), a congressman, an ambassador, and Director of Central Intelligence. He is the oldest former President and Vice President, and the last former President who is a veteran of World War II. Bush is often referred to as "George H. W. Bush", "Bush 41", "Bush the Elder", and "George Bush, Sr." to distinguish him from his son, former President George W. Bush. Prior to that son's fame or notability, he was widely known simply as George Bush.

Bush was born in Milton, Massachusetts, to Senator Prescott Bush and Dorothy Walker Bush. Following the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, Bush postponed college, enlisted in the U.S. Navy on his 18th birthday, and became the youngest aviator in the U.S. Navy at the time. He served until the end of the war, then attended Yale University. Graduating in 1948, he moved his family to West Texas and entered the oil business, becoming a millionaire by the age of 40.

In the United States, presidential job approval ratings were introduced by George Gallup in the late 1930s (probably 1937) to gauge public support for the President of the United States during his term. An approval rating is a percentage determined by a polling which indicates the percentage of respondents to an opinion poll who approve of a particular person or program. Typically, an approval rating is given to a political figure based on responses to a poll in which a sample of people are asked whether they approve or disapprove of that particular political figure. A typical question might ask:

Like most surveys that predict public opinion, the approval rating is subjective. Many unscientific approval rating systems exist that skew popular opinion. However, the approval rating is generally accepted as a statistically valid indicator of the comparative changes in the popular US mood regarding a president. The website RealClearPolitics.com keeps track of the current polling averages, which can be seen below.

George W. Bush, the 43rd President of the United States, has elicited a variety of public perceptions regarding his policies, personality, and performance as a head of state. In the U.S. and elsewhere, journalists, polling organizations, and others have documented the expression of an evolving array of opinions of President Bush. Time magazine named George W. Bush as its Person of the Year for 2000 and 2004, citing him as the most influential person, for good or ill, during these two years.

The approval ratings of George W. Bush have ranged from a record high to a record low. Bush began his presidency with ratings near 50%. In the time of national crisis following the September 11 attacks, polls showed approval ratings of greater than 85%, peaking in at 92%, and a steady 80–90% approval for about four months after the attacks. Afterward, his ratings steadily declined as the economy suffered and the Iraq War initiated by his administration continued. By early 2006, his average rating was near 40%, and in July 2008, a poll indicated a low of 22%.

On 11 April 1951, U.S. President Harry S. Truman relieved General of the Army Douglas MacArthur of his commands for making public statements that contradicted the administration's policies. MacArthur was a popular hero of World War II who was then the commander of United Nations forces fighting in the Korean War, and his relief remains a controversial topic in the field of civil-military relations.

MacArthur led the Allied forces in the Southwest Pacific during World War II, and after the war was in charge of the Occupation of Japan. When North Korea invaded South Korea in June 1950, starting the Korean War, he was designated commander of the United Nations forces defending South Korea. He conceived and executed the amphibious assault at Inchon on 15 September 1950, for which he was hailed as a military genius. However, when he followed up his victory with a full-scale invasion of North Korea on Truman's orders, China intervened in the war and inflicted a series of defeats, compelling him to withdraw from North Korea. By April 1951, the military situation had stabilized, but MacArthur's public statements became increasingly irritating to Truman, and he relieved MacArthur of his commands. The Senate Armed Services Committee and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee held a joint inquiry into the military situation and the circumstances surrounding MacArthur's relief, and concluded that "the removal of General MacArthur was within the constitutional powers of the President but the circumstances were a shock to national pride."

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