In the weeks he's been debating what to do next in Afghanistan, President Barack Obama has surely gotten lots of advice.
Frank Newport, editor in chief at Gallup, offers his thoughts — based on his firm's polling — about what Obama needs to do when he addresses the nation from West Point tonight about the new plan for Afghanistan. Frank recommends that Obama:
— Acknowledge that things are going badly for U.S.
— Reinforce the basic purpose of being involved in Afghanistan.
— Justify why sending more troops is necessary.
— Address issues of cost and how the escalation is going to be paid for.
Here's something to watch over the next few days as the public reacts to Obama's speech: His approval rating, in Gallup's daily "tracking" poll, has edged back above 50% (just barely, at 51% today). It had dipped as low as 48% in recent days. Which way will it go after tonight?