Asked yesterday about her husband's plummeting job approval, Laura Bush told FOX news that "I don't really believe those polls".

And why is that? "I travel around the United States, I see a lot of appreciation for him. A lot of people come up to me and say stay the course."

Oh. That plus the fact that the White House apparently has it's own set of polls - the one's Karl Rove was talking about today that show the Bush likeability and personal approval ratings comfortably in the sixties.

"It's all in the way the question gets phrased," Rove explained. "The press loves to use negative questions, so of course they get the negative answers that they're looking for. For example, the latest Harris Poll asked 'You wouldn't want to have a beer with the president, would you?' Totally misleading, isn't it? If you say yes, are you really saying no? And they take those numbers and spin them into these crazy numbers that you see out there.

Our own pollsters asked a more direct question - 'Would you like to have a beer with George Bush' and the numbers shot way up, right near to the fifty percent level. When we added that the president was buying, we broke into the mid-sixties."

"Now that's likeability for you. But the press doesn't like to discuss likeability. They drink alone. And that's why they are so obsessed with the issue of job performance. Let me ask you a rhetorical question. What if people were only to judge you by the job you do? You wouldn't like it very much, I'll bet. You'd probably say, hey, there's more to me than this dumb job. I think you can probably see where I'm headed with all this. It's attitude adjustment time. And you don't even have to ask - the president is buying."



2006, Mark Hoback