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Obama's Job Approval Continues to Rise in Latest Poll, Thanks to Independents

4 years ago
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Most recent polls have shown President Barack Obama's job approval ratings moving up slowly and surely to the magic 50 percent mark, or even a little beyond. In many surveys last year they had fallen to the mid-40s.

A new CNN/Opinion Research poll, released a day before Obama gives his State of the Union Address, now has his approval rating at 55 percent.

Last week, a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll, conducted Jan. 13-17, said those surveyed approved of Obama's performance by a 53 percent to 41 percent margin -- a jump of eight points since December in those who approved of the job he was doing, and a decline of 7 points when it came to those who disapproved.

Obama's rebound has been attributed to a variety of factors ranging from his handling of the Arizona shooting tragedy to the extension of Bush-era tax cuts and unemployment benefits that he negotiated during the lame-duck session. His ability to strike a deal sat well with many independents who, polls shows, want to see the parties work together more to get things accomplished. An AP/GfK poll, conducted Jan. 5-10, found 46 percent of independents saying that Obama deserved to be re-elected while 43 percent did not, with 10 percent undecided.

The CNN poll, conducted Jan. 21-23, had Obama's approval-to-disapproval margin at 55 percent to 44 percent. In mid-December, the poll found Americans split at 48 percent each as to whether or not they approved of his performance. (In all these figures, the remainder were undecided).

Perhaps the best news for Obama in the CNN poll is the fact that independents, who had soured on him and the Democrats during last year's midterm campaign, said they approved of his performance by a 54 percent to 45 percent margin, with 1 percent undecided. In the December poll, independents disapproved of the job he was doing by a 54 percent to 41 percent margin, with 5 percent undecided.

Fifty-four percent of all those surveyed still disapprove of Obama's handling of the economy compared to 45 percent who approve, a finding consistent with most other recent polls. But other surveys, and this one too, show that the level of disapproval on this issue is falling. In November, 58 percent disapproved of Obama's handling of the economy while 40 percent approved.

But the public continues to pan Obama when it comes to dealing with the federal deficit. Sixty-percent disapprove of his handling of it while 38 percent approve, a margin that has been about the same dating back to January 2010.

While the new Congress, with the House in Republican hands, is still in its infancy, it gets marks from the public that are as negative as those lawmakers received last year. Seventy-two percent disapprove of the way Congress is doing its job.

Obama also fares better than congressional Democrats or Republicans when it comes who those surveyed think will move the country in the right direction.

Americans say Obama's policies will move the country the right way by a 52 percent to 47 percent margin. But they say the policies of Senate and House GOP leaders will move the country in the wrong direction by 50 percent to 46 percent. Fifty-two percent say the policies of Democratic congressional leaders will move the country in the wrong direction compared to 45 percent who say they will move it in the right direction.

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President Obama has ended 2 wars, ended the worst recession in years, reformed health care, negotiated the start treaty, ended discrimination of gays in the Military and so much more. That is why he is the only president in history who can have a 55% approval rating while unemployment is at 9.5%.

I read an article with good old Sarah and was criticizing the Presidents state of the Union and was quoted as saying, the govt isnt in the jobs business.

Well if that is true then why is everyone on the right blaming Obama for the unemployment rate?

Keep up the good work Mr. President. I appreciate it.

January 27 2011 at 7:02 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Pres. Obama will be recognized as the President who saved America from a second depression while ending 2 wars at the same time. I am certain this is how history will record his presidency. He is a scholar and a gentleman at all times.

January 26 2011 at 12:49 AM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

This poll is meaningless. It's too far away from the election to have any use except as fodder for unimaginative, lazy journalists content to dress up press releases. Bruce Drake joins the chorus of reporters pushing the "comeback kid" theme, which commentators on the right predicted more than a year ago when Pres. Obama was stumbling from one bad decision to the next.

The important thing to observe is this: when Obama behaved as a progressive, a majority of the country disapproved. Now that he's seeming to accept conservative prescriptions -- cutting spending and regulation, lowering taxes on all earners, getting the government out of the way of job creation -- he's rebounding in the polls.

But it's unlikely to last. He's too arrogant and self-righteous to accept what the other side believes. He maintains the simplistic, petty belief of the left that the rich are that way because they stole a disproportionate share from everybody else, got lucky, or inherited it. He takes as his mission a rebalancing. He truly sees himself as a redeemer, sent to save us from our worst instincts and fundamental immorality. But he's a hypocrite. Under Obama, the most significant gains have occurred among -- guess who -- large banks, government unions, and other politically connected groups like rent-seeking green-energy companies. He talks angry populism but serves big donors, like every other politician.

There's also the little problem of Obamacare. When the scale of that disaster is made clear in the course of the next two years, Obama will be hoping for 5% unemployment to act as a distraction during the election.

January 25 2011 at 4:21 PM Report abuse -3 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to dvanker's comment

When did Obama act as a progressive? Not since he took this office that's for sure. When deregulation became the mantra of those in charge, the rich did steal whatever wasn't nailed down. I agree with the rest, he's no better than a republican when it come to reigning Wall St and the banks in, his policy of wars that accomplish nothing but burning billions a month for zilch and lead to increased destruction of our own rights has continued Bush's Surveillance State that is about two steps from a police state, and the health care reform bill was doomed as soon as he started cutting deals with the very entities it was supposed to protect us from. Until this country has the sense to go to single payer we will continue to get robbed blind by all involved.

January 25 2011 at 9:01 PM Report abuse -6 rate up rate down Reply

Some of you remind me of spoiled brats..the car you got for graduation wasn't a Lexus and you can't have your own room at the private college they are paying for...whine and bitch...try getting real..if you are married, please tell me you never make mistakes and that your spouse is happy with you all the time..then think about all a President has to do (besides make and keep YOU happy) with the responsibility of 360 million he right all the time..NO..has things improved since he became President..YES..will it get better..I hope so because it was not so good a few years ago..and stop listening to those radio pundits..ask them this question..if they have the love of this country as they say they for President and give up their 500 million a year gig..better yet..join the military and show us how much you care..

January 25 2011 at 2:17 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to weprintandsend's comment

Obama, one and done. Worst president ever. Do you really think we have forgotten his HC law, his suing AZ, the cap and trade, the taxes for people making under $250k that he promised wouldn't get taxed, his promise not to have a mandate to buy insurance when he was running against Hillary, calling conservatives his and hispanics enemies because we don't support amnesty... the list is endless. Obama one and done.

January 26 2011 at 12:46 AM Report abuse -3 rate up rate down Reply

It never cease to amaze me how we call ourselves Americans and we say we want what's best for Americans.
When Pres Bush was in office we all felt our country sinking to record lows in unemployment, The War, health care cost, etc. Then we overwhelmingly backed Pres Obama because of what he said he could do for our country. The Man is DOING IT...............HELLO.. and we are still not satisfied??? Pres Obamas ratings is going up because LEVEL HEADED AMERICANS are seeing for themselves that The Man is doing a GR8 job considering what he is up against......He is trying to bring us together and Lord knows whe havent seen that since 9/11, will it take another disaster like that to make us realize that if we want our country to be better WE ARE THE CHANGE THAT IS NEEDED, In our thinking, In our actions, and in the way we treat one ANOTHER.....PRES OBAMA is trying to make us a GR8 country but we all must do our parts.

January 25 2011 at 1:29 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply

Since I never had the opportunity to ever see this so-called poll, my independent voter rating for Obama is a big thumbs way down. I am daily more & more angry at his administration which is lame at best & destructive at worst. So no I don't approve of him.

January 25 2011 at 12:57 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

where is this poll. ive not seen it. have you seen it. we have not seen it.

January 25 2011 at 11:45 AM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply

I can't believe that poll. I still don't have health insurance, $733.00 a month premiums for just me is more than I can afford since I'm still not working full time. We lost our employer covered health insurance after the health care bill passed because we received notice that our premiums were going to increase over 40%. There is no cap in the bill. And did you know, if you sell your house, you will have to pay a minium 3.25% sales tax on it to help pay for the bill? Gas over $3.00 a gallon. When that happened during the Bush administration we were all told he single handedly manipulated the prices to help his oil buddies. Whose doing it now? They have given billions to Wall Street and banks that did nothing to help the regular people. And food prices, through the roof. I realize he inherited a mess, but nothing, NOTHING, has improved for myself or many of my friends and family. They have only gotten worse. No one wants to blame any Democrat for the housing mess. Barney Frank said Freddie and Frannie were just fine.People were starting to warn, but no, everyone had to have a house. Liking the guy in one thing, thinking he's doing a great job is another thing. I wonder if the two are being confused?

January 25 2011 at 9:11 AM Report abuse +8 rate up rate down Reply

These poll numbers are as belieable as Mr obama's promise to be nice ,, give me a break

January 24 2011 at 9:46 PM Report abuse -4 rate up rate down Reply


January 24 2011 at 9:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to ibabini's comment

lol... What actions?, the 15 trllion debt, the 9.6 percent unemployment, or the 3.25 per gallon gas.

January 24 2011 at 9:19 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

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