- Jul 31, 2005
- Reaction score
- Political Leaning
WASHINGTON - Most Americans say they aren't impressed by the ethics and honesty of the Bush administration, already under scrutiny for its justifications for an unpopular war in
Iraq and its role in the leak of a covert
CIA officer's identity.
Almost six in 10 — 57 percent — said they do not think the Bush administration has high ethical standards and the same portion says
President Bush is not honest, an AP-Ipsos poll found. Just over four in 10 say the administration has high ethical standards and that Bush is honest. Whites, Southerners and evangelicals were most likely to believe Bush is honest.
Bush, who promised in the 2000 campaign to uphold "honor and integrity" in the White House, last week ordered White House workers, from presidential advisers to low-ranking aides, to attend ethics classes.
Concern about the administration's ethics has been fueled by the controversy over flawed intelligence leading up to the Iraq war and the recent indictment of Vice President
Dick Cheney's top aide, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, on charges of perjury and obstruction of justice for his role in the leak of CIA operative Valerie Plame's name.
That loss of trust complicates Bush's efforts to rebuild his standing with the public. His job approval rating remains at his all-time low in the AP-Ipsos poll of 37 percent.
Some Republicans are nervous about the GOP's political position.
"A lot of elected Republicans are running for the hills in the Northeast," said Connecticut GOP strategist Chris DePino after what he called "a waterfall of missteps" by Republicans. Bush and the GOP must return to their message that the United States has been safe from terrorism during his administration, DePino said.
Only 42 percent in the new poll said they approve of Bush's handling of foreign policy and terrorism, his lowest rating yet in an area that has long been his strongest issue.
The war in Iraq is at the core of the public's unrest, polling found.