War President : The Approval Ratings of George W. Bush
Eichenberg, Richard C.
Stoll, Richard J.
The authors estimate a model of the job approval ratings of President George W. Bush that includes five sets of variables: a “honeymoon” effect, an autoregressive function that tracks a decline in approval, measures of economic performance, measures of important “rally events,” and a measure of the costs of war—in this case, the U.S. death toll in the Iraq War. Several significant effects are found, including the rally that followed the attacks of September 11, 2001; the commencement of the war in Iraq; and the capture of Baghdad in April 2003. Since the beginning of the war in Iraq, however, the casualties of war have had a significant negative impact on Bush’s approval ratings. Although the effects of additional battle deaths in Iraq will decrease approval only marginally, results suggest that there is also little prospect for sustained improvement so long as casualties continue to accumulate.
George W. Bush; approval ratings; Iraq War