Some Public Opinion With Your Tea?

Tea Parties aside, Barack Obama’s handling of the economy remains extremely popular:


Gallup also reports the following finding that reenforces my general sense that you shouldn’t take public opinion survey data about second-tier personalities and issues at face value:

The partisan ratings of Bernanke have shifted from last year, when he was serving under a Republican president. At that time, the Fed chairman received a 61% confidence rating from Republicans, 43% from independents, and just a 40% rating from Democrats. Apparently, Americans associate the Fed chairman with the particular president he happens to be serving under.

Ben Bernanke was, of course, not only appointed to his Fed job by George W. Bush but he was on the Bush Council of Economic Advisers. But people just have very little awareness of most of what’s happening in the political world, and tend to form their opinions using relatively crude heuristics. People do have strong opinions about Barack Obama, and they see Bernanke appearing next to Obama administration officials and their views shift accordingly.