— From CNBC's Steve Liesman
MIDLAND, TX -- Anecdotal evidence suggests President Bush's support is lagging in his hometown. An assortment of oilmen and other businesspeople and civic leaders used words like "disappointed" to describe their feelings about Bush's presidency, citing deficit spending, the Iraq war, and the Foley scandal as causes.
They expressed little support for Democrats, but their lack of enthusiasm for Republicans and the President echoed concerns of GOP leaders that the base could just choose to stay home this November.
Another measure of residents' feelings: Former Russian President Mikhail Gorbachev, in Midland to give a speech before a packed house of 4,000, got applause after making some critical remarks about the Administration, including a comment that the Iraq war was a mistake. One of the loudest rounds of applause came when Gorbachev said Bush seems OK -- but the problem is the entourage he has surrounded himself with.