The Washington Times - June 12, 2013, 08:29AM

More Americans view former President George W. Bush favorably than unfavorably for the first time since 2005, a new poll stated.

Gallup says 49 percent of respondents viewed Mr. Bush in a positive light, compared to 46 percent with the opposite view.

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It’s a drastic change from when Mr. Bush left office, with 40 percent viewing him favorably and 59 percent unfavorably in January 2009, according to Gallup. 

His marks dipped further by March 2009, to 35 percent seeing him favorably and 63 percent unfavorably.

The polling group noted the Mr. Bush has kept a low-profile since departing office, but returned to the spotlight in April with the opening of his presidential library in Dallas.

Mr. Bush enjoyed an 87 percent favorable rating in November 2001, shortly after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, which is 1 percent below the highest-ever rating Gallup has measured for any public figure. 

Colin Powell and Tiger Woods achieved the high-water mark in 2002 and 2000, respectively.

Mr. Bush had not seen a more positive than negative rating since April 2005.