This interpretation of the 10/9 CBS News/New York Times poll from Richard Dalton:
The public’s view of Iraq is as dark as it has been since the war began in 2003, with two-thirds saying it is going somewhat or very badly, while only 3 percent are saying the war is going very well. Two-thirds said they disapproved of how Mr. Bush was handling Iraq.
Mr. Bush’s job approval rating has slipped to 34 percent, from 37 percent in September. That is one of the lowest levels of his presidency and poses a complication for the White House as it seeks to send him out on the road to rally base voters. Mr. Bush’s job approval rating has even slipped with his base: 75 percent of conservative Republicans approve of the way he has handled his job, compared with 96 percent in November 2004.
The president clearly faces constraints as he seeks to address the public concerns about Iraq that have shrouded this midterm election: 83 percent of respondents thought that Mr. Bush was either hiding something or mostly lying when he discussed how the war in Iraq was going. Fifty-seven percent of respondents said Mr. Bush was personally aware of intelligence reports before Sept. 11 that warned of possible domestic terrorist attacks using airplanes. When the same question was asked in May 2002, 41 percent said they believed Mr. Bush was aware.
The poll found that 47 percent of respondents believed that Democrats came closer to sharing their moral values, compared with 38 percent who said Republicans did. The Democratic standing in this area included some unlikely groups: 26 percent of conservatives and 43 percent of people who live in the South named Democrats as the party that came closer to sharing their values.