A recent series of polls brings to mind a bobblehead doll, whose head wags from side to side and from front to back in a random fashion. That disconnected movement seems to be a visual representation of what the polls have been saying about the general public and its views of President Obama's efforts to reform the health care system.
Before the president's nationally televised speech to a joint session of Congress earlier this month, for example, several polls announced that either a majority or plurality of Americans disapproved of the president's performance on health care. They didn't tell us if the people were dissatisfied because he was trying to do too much, or because he wasn't trying to do enough. All we got was the dismal information about how the public felt let down by the president.
Then, on the Friday after Obama's speech, a CBS poll declared that the public had rallied in favor of the president. A majority of the public now approved of his handling of health care by a 14-point margin, compared to a week earlier when a plurality disapproved by a 7-point margin. That represented a 21-point swing in opinion, which is no mean feat for one speech. (For all poll results, see pollingreport.com.)