Access Type

Open Access Dissertation

Date of Award

January 2011

Degree Type


Degree Name



Political Science

First Advisor

Ewa Golebiowska


George W. Bush's approval rate had its shares of ups and downs. In this time series study I analyze the empirical evidence of the media's and economy's impact on his approval rate from 2001-2009. People tend to hold the president responsible for the country's economic performance and the media influences people's opinions of the president through agenda setting and priming. I operationalize the media influence on people into an independent variable. My economic independent variables are the monthly percent change in inflation rate, unemployment rate, and personal income. The dependent variable is the president's approval rate. This study seeks to understand the relationship between the economy, media, and George W. Bush's approval rate and add insight to the body of approval research.