by devilrays, Wed Dec 10, 2008 at 09:16:45 AM EST
To be clear, the transition comes down to mostly building the cabinet, but also encompasses public statements made about future policy proposals - to be implemented once Obama takes office -, so the overall approval shown here encompasses the entire transition phase as a whole, not just the cabinet picks. However, the cabinet announcements are the most prolific stories coming from a presidential transition phase, so it is likely that the transition approval shown is mostly due to the shaping of the cabinet.
The data graph shows that as of today a full 97% of Democrats approve of Obama's handling of the transition. More telling is that no Democrats disapprove of Obama's handling of the transition. ZERO. The closest discontent to be found is in 3% of Democrats putting themselves in the undecided column of 'Don't know.' I am quite sure that this is some new record for presidential transition periods with approval amongst ones own part members basically unanimous.
Let's also make the assumption here that progressives/liberals make up about half of those who count themselves in the Democratic corner. Where is the disapproval and discontent amongst progressives the mainstream media has been crowing and palavering about for over a week now? Would that not show up in the subgroup of DEMOCRATS in polls like these with a BETTER THAN ZERO disapproval rating?
Polls like these seem to suggest that those who voice outright disapproval and disappointment with Obama's transition are in the tiniest of minorities, but due to the high profile of blogs have found a strong megaphone to air their grievances and in some instances claim to be talking for a numerous slice of the progressive part of the Democratic party, when that does not appear to be the case at all. Others have a more nuanced approach and disagree with a few of the appointments but overall are satisfied. But one can parse those from the disapprovers easily when looking at broad judgements and policy predictions based on an overall negative perception of the cabinet picks.
Another thing to ponder: When Obama sees that his handling of the transition is met with very strong approval from his own party to the tune of 97% and 0% disapproval, does that not suggest that Obama would have to feel that he is doing "the mix" of his cabinet picks exactly right? Does this not, to Obama, validate strongly what he has been doing?