30% ExcellentRasmussen's own analysis of the poll compresses the "excellent" and "good" responses and highlights the 51% figure, but given the quality of the writing and delivery, the press response to the speech, and the question itself, the answer should be "excellent."
1% Not sure
Even people who are deeply disturbed by Obama's connection to Wright and think he should have simply and clearly denounced the man should still think it was an "excellent." "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God" is a excellent speech: We study it 300+ years after it was delivered, but we're not buying the message. I think Americans will study Barack Obama's speech 100 years from now, maybe even 300 years from now, whether he becomes President or not. At the very least it was a good speech, yet 49% would not even concede that.
The important break in the numbers is between "excellent" and the rest, and 70% said the speech fell short of "excellent." This is, I think, disastrous for Obama.
Asked how "concerned" they are "about Obama’s relationship with his former Pastor, Jeremiah Wright," only 21% said they were "not at all concerned." 42% were "very concerned." Asked whether the speech was "racially divisive, unifying, or neither," only 30% — 30% again — thought the speech was "unifying," which is what Obama intended it and his entire campaign to be.
Obama's popularity has been built on unifying us and transcending race. If only 30% of us heard unification in that speech, then the speech and the connection to Wright have been massively destructive to what is the chief substance of his reputation.
ADDED: Obama told white people to feel guilty about race just when they'd been so happy thinking that loving him, just him, was the answer to racial problems. When we saw him consorting with someone who seemed to hate us, we needed reassurance that Obama loves us, and loving Obama was enough. But he didn't say that, and now we're confused. Our boyfriend was telling us he needs to see other people, and we don't understand the relationship anymore.