President Obama’s bad week, in one chart

May 17, 2013

It doesn't take a political genius to grasp that President Obama has just weathered one of the worst weeks of his time in office.

But, sometimes a picture tells the story better than all the words we've written on it this week.  Below is a chart produced by TargetPoint, a Republican consulting firm, using their National Dialogue Monitor to track national conversation on May 15 and 16. ("The National Dialogue Monitor tracks every time a politician, celebrity, organization, issue or corporation is mentioned across all media channels -- television, radio, newspapers, magazines, blogs, websites, and social networks," according to an explanation on the firm's website.)

The bigger the bubble, the more mentions of Obama and that particular issue. Red bubbles indicate negative sentiment, green ones positive sentiment.

As you can see above, the conversation about Obama and entitlements was the only one that had a positive tinge to it this week. The most negative of the "big" bubbles was around Benghazi but there was plenty of negative sentiment around both the IRS and the Justice Department's secret seizure of phone records of AP reporters.

One week is not something on which broad conclusions should be drawn. But, there's no question that this was a really bad period for President Obama.

Chris Cillizza writes “The Fix,” a politics blog for the Washington Post. He also covers the White House.
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Chris Cillizza · May 17, 2013