Much is being said these days regarding the state of the nation. A new year has started and questions abound. So many topics that affect the public policy of the nation. Is the nation on the right track or are we going down the wrong track?

There is much polling data available to analyze. Again, the data that I will be using is the polling data from Scott Rasmussen. Most of the other polling firms show right track numbers that are comparable. The data that I will be using are the weekly polling results organized by month. The monthly results will not be exact by month, though. I will combine four weeks of data or five weeks of data so that we have comparative data by month. Most months consist of four weeks of data. Several months consist of five weeks. Thus, some overlap by month will occur, but not much.

With this in mind, let’s look at trends.

Right Track/Wrong Track (Overall)

Time Span : Right / Wrong / Difference

Jan ’09 : 28.00% / 62.50% / -34.50%
Feb ’09 : 30.01% / 62.35% / -32.34%
Mar ’09 : 34.64% / 58.89% / -24.25%
Apr ’09 : 37.14% / 57.10% / -19.96%
May ’09 : 37.91% / 55.82% / -17.91%
Jun ’09 : 36.76% / 57.79% / -21.04%
Jul ’09 : 32.91% / 61.62% / -28.71%
Aug ’09 : 34.24% / 60.21% / -25.97%
Sep ’09 : 33.32% / 61.67% / -28.35%
Oct ’09 : 33.10% / 61.51% / -28.41%
Nov ’09 : 31.77% / 62.67% / -30.90%
Dec ’09 : 29.78% / 64.88% / -35.10%

Yearly : 33.58% / 60.47% / -26.89%

Notice the distinct trends. The nation did not think that we were on the right track around the time of the inauguration. By March, April, May and June the data shows that the nation started to think that we were beginning to improve. Do you remember the events for these four months?

The Stimulus Package had been passed and, despite what many people were saying, people became somewhat more optimistic. April had Tea Parties and so, I was surprised to see that the results stayed strong. In fact, the “wrong track” percentage decreased in April.

May had a new Supreme Court Justice and much talk of improving economic conditions.

June had much discussion on Healthcare and, to my surprise, the right track percentage stayed rather healthy (no pun intended … well, maybe a little pun was intended.)

Much discussion on healthcare followed and the percentage for right track decreased rather significantly from June to July. This was expected, at least by me.

But why did the percentage rise again in August? I can’t figure out why this happened. Was it a reaction to Town Hall meetings? Did people think that democracy was in action and, thus, we were more on the right track again?

September through December had increasing unemployment numbers and decreasing support for Healthcare Reform. This obviously appears within the data. Right track is decreasing and wrong track is increasing.

So, my friends, when do you think that it will go below 28%, the percentage at the inauguration?



Now, let’s look at subgroups.


Right Track/Wrong Track (Republicans)

Time Span : Right / Wrong / Difference

Jan ’09 : 14.00% / 79.50% / -65.50%
Feb ’09 : 12.23% / 83.11% / -70.88%
Mar ’09 : 13.04% / 83.15% / -70.11%
Apr ’09 : 13.08% / 82.94% / -69.86%
May ’09 : 13.67% / 81.86% / -68.19%
Jun ’09 : 13.32% / 82.62% / -69.31%
Jul ’09 : 10.90% / 85.76% / -74.86%
Aug ’09 : 11.64% / 85.13% / -73.49%
Sep ’09 : 11.36% / 86.08% / -74.73%
Oct ’09 : 11.82% / 84.83% / -73.01%
Nov ’09 : 9.95% / 87.63% / -77.68%
Dec ’09 : 8.57% / 89.06% / -80.50%

Yearly : 11.88% / 84.51% / -72.64%

These results show a consistent shrinkage of support for the right track position.

It’s interesting to see that right track support by republicans remained in double digits up through October.

It’s also very obvious that the right track position is decreasing by self-identified republicans.

Do you think that it will ever get into double-digit support for “right track” again?


Right Track/Wrong Track (Democrats)

Time Span : Right / Wrong / Difference

Jan ’09 : 45.00% / 45.50% / -0.50%
Feb ’09 : 49.80% / 40.70% / 9.10%
Mar ’09 : 57.32% / 34.05% / 23.27%
Apr ’09 : 61.83% / 30.96% / 30.87%
May ’09 : 63.93% / 28.96% / 34.98%
Jun ’09 : 61.41% / 32.49% / 28.92%
Jul ’09 : 56.38% / 35.91% / 20.47%
Aug ’09 : 59.29% / 32.76% / 26.54%
Sep ’09 : 59.75% / 32.90% / 26.85%
Oct ’09 : 57.88% / 34.73% / 23.15%
Nov ’09 : 56.80% / 34.62% / 22.18%
Dec ’09 : 54.02% / 37.99% / 16.03%

Yearly : 57.54% / 34.63% / 22.92%

This data is fascinating. Support rose significantly from January through June for the right track position among self-identified democrats, but since June, support has decreased.

Will it continue on a downward trend or will the Healthcare bills help increase support for the right track position?


Right Track/Wrong Track (Independents)

Time Span : Right / Wrong / Difference

Jan ’09 : 21.00% / 68.00% / -47.00%
Feb ’09 : 22.55% / 69.08% / -46.52%
Mar ’09 : 26.95% / 66.67% / -39.72%
Apr ’09 : 27.57% / 65.79% / -38.21%
May ’09 : 29.42% / 63.39% / -33.97%
Jun ’09 : 28.79% / 65.09% / -36.30%
Jul ’09 : 24.84% / 70.10% / -45.26%
Aug ’09 : 25.20% / 69.91% / -44.71%
Sep ’09 : 23.90% / 71.38% / -47.48%
Oct ’09 : 26.30% / 68.55% / -42.25%
Nov ’09 : 24.19% / 70.61% / -46.42%
Dec ’09 : 21.43% / 73.40% / -51.97%

Yearly : 25.41% / 68.50% / -43.08%

This data shows the same exact trends as the other subgroups. Improvement in support of the right track position and a decrease in the wrong track position. Then unemployment increased … and look what happened.