We just ended one of the most divisive presidential administrations in my recollection. President Obama may not have been my “favorite” president, but it would be folly to think he did not influence many Americans. So what attitudes changed (or did not change) during Obama’s eight year tenure?
[Source: How America’s Thinking Changed Under Obama, by Reuben Fischer-Baum and Dhrumil Mehta]
Republican victories of 2016 can be seen, in part, as a repudiation of his policies. Nonetheless, Obama’s personal popularity finished on a reasonably high note. The following 3 graphs document how attitudes changed during the eight years of Obama.
It will come as no surprise that Obama’s foreign policy notions fell “progressively” (pun intended) during his administration. The “bump” in satisfaction with his handling of “terrorism” was related to the bin Laden raid that resulted in the death of the hated mass murderer.
There were several things that changed very little during Obama’s tenure. These were “arguments” that even the smooth talking President couldn’t win. No one ever liked Obamacare. He never made headway in his war on guns. And Americans are for the most part fed up with “big government” as the solution to problems.
However, Obama did manage to begin a more libertarian bent among Americans. I have a personal libertarian bent and oppose the death penalty, have no problem with same-sex marriage, and think the prohibition of drugs creates as many or more problems than it solves (see my five-part series on the War on Drugs – you may be surprised):
An interactive graph in the article is fun to explore.
And thanks to CAG for sending this to me.