Not since Ronald Reagan has an American president in his early months enjoyed as high approval ratings as does Barack Obama. A new New York Times/CBS News poll indicates that three-quarters of Americans back President Obama. It's further confirmation not only of Obama's extraordinary political skills, but also the precipice that the GOP hasn't approached but actively leaped over. When Obama delivers the State of the Union address Tuesday, he will wield the one of the most powerful hands history has ever bestowed upon an American president.
Obama will undoubtedly seize the opportunity to sketch out his program for American renewal, both in domestic and foreign policy. His speech, I predict, will not only be seen as a pivotal moment in restoring American democracy, but also an epitaph for the conservative movement that has finally run American into the ground.
By 2010, the GOP's refusal to vote for the stimulus bill will been seen a as decisive event in the party's fortunes--for the worse. Had the party cooperated with the president, it might have been able to resuscitate itself. The Times/CBS poll indicates that Americans are displaying great patience and don't expect the economy to turn around any time soon. But they have seen through the GOP's charade of purporting to stand for fiscal discipline--after plunging the country into $1 trillion of debt over the past eight years.
The conservative movement is now officially dead. All that remains is for the pallbearers to carry the casket to its burial site. Obama's speech Tuesday will provide the funeral oration.