May 1st, 2008
02:30 PM ET
2 years ago

Poll: Bush most unpopular in modern history

New poll numbers show bad news for president Bush.
New poll numbers show bad news for president Bush.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - A new poll suggests that George W. Bush is the most unpopular president in modern American history.

A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Thursday indicates that 71 percent of the American public disapprove of how Bush his handling his job as president.

"No president has ever had a higher disapproval rating in any CNN or Gallup poll; in fact, this is the first time that any president's disapproval rating has cracked the 70 percent mark," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.

"Bush's approval rating, which stands at 28 percent in our new poll, remains better than the all-time lows set by Harry Truman and Richard Nixon (22 percent and 24 percent, respectively) but even those two presidents never got a disapproval rating in the 70s," Holland added. "The previous all-time record in CNN or Gallup polling was set by Truman, 66 percent disapproval in January 1952."

CNN Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider adds, "He is more unpopular than Richard Nixon was just before he resigned from the presidency in August 1974." President Nixon's disapproval rating in August 1974 stood at 67 percent.

The poll also indicates that support for the war in Iraq has never been lower. Thirty percent of those questioned favored the war while 68 percent opposed the conflict.

"Americans are growing more pessimistic about the war," Holland said. "In January, nearly half believed that things were going well for the U.S. in Iraq; now that figure has dropped to 39 percent."

The numbers on the Iraq war come on the five-year anniversary of President Bush's "mission accomplished" moment onboard the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln, when Bush proclaimed that "major combat operations in Iraq have ended."

The record low support for the war in a CNN poll could be one reason behind the president's unpopularity, but it probably is not the only one.

"Support for the war, the assessment of the economy and approval of Mr. Bush are all about the same - bad," Schneider said.

The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted by telephone from Monday through Wednesday, with 1,008 adult Americans questioned. The poll's sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points.


Filed under: President Bush
soundoff (321 Responses)
  1. Kel from Auburn AL

    That's right up there with Hillary's dishonest rating. Kind of tells you something, doesn't it?

    May 1, 2008 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  2. il voter

    well done, Dubya.

    May 1, 2008 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  3. HSNP

    Good job George. You've lived up to your family name. Another complete screw-up.

    May 1, 2008 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  4. yes we can

    this is news? come on CNN ..you didnt need a poll for this one....

    go to google, type in "worst ever" and you know who pops up

    May 1, 2008 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  5. ART in TX

    well uh..duh!

    May 1, 2008 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  6. fred

    LMAO....oh what a shocker.....NOT!!!

    Obama wouldn't be any better!!!

    May 1, 2008 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  7. Ivan, Schiff

    This is your lead story on the "Ticker Page" but your "Ticker" headline on your home page has the defection of a Hillary superdelegate, what gives. More of your anti Hillary pro Obama bias?

    May 1, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  8. Dexter

    Is this news?

    A lot of us knew he was an idiot in 2000, and most of us knew it in 2004... yet the media is just catching on.

    Nice. You should all be proud.

    May 1, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  9. rice, bryan

    enough said isn't it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    May 1, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  10. Bob

    And I'm sure his response would be, to quote his VP – SO?

    May 1, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  11. Ryan

    Obama will be next *IF* he wins!

    May 1, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  12. jj

    I'm surprised that his approval rating is that high. 28% must be his family voting that high. Sure not anyone else.

    May 1, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  13. mistygirl318

    resign.....leave office...impeach him...he stinks

    May 1, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  14. Justin (ny)

    Well, we all knew it, just just makes it official: George W. Bush: WORST PRESIDENT IN AMERICAN HISTORY!

    May 1, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  15. Donna

    Bush is not only the "most unpopular president" of all American Presidents but he is by far the dumbest with the stupidest looks on his face.

    May 1, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  16. clear thinking

    Eeeeer, Yeah! Figures!

    May 1, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  17. Beverly, NYC

    Does this headline really need comments. Talk about buyers remorse.

    May 1, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  18. Lostfigs

    Wright is the "gift that keeps on giving"; he is not going away and unless Hillary wins, Dems won't see the inside of the White House.

    Hillary 08!!!!!

    May 1, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  19. Bushwacked in Eugene, OR

    No surprise there!

    In the future he may well be looked upon as the worst ever, and the president who presided over the beginnings of a downfall for a great nation. I hope I'm wrong on that one.

    May 1, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  20. Pam in MN

    Well, there ya go!

    May 1, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  21. Joe at Boston College

    hillary, please go away so we can focus on the general election!

    obama 08

    May 1, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  22. Kelley

    Well DUH

    May 1, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  23. Anne E.

    This is a no-brainer (pretty much like the subject matter).
    My money's on his numbers dipping even lower than Truman & Nixon. THAT'S something at which he CAN "succeed."

    May 1, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  24. Ed from PA

    worst. president. ever.

    best. oil man. ever.

    May 1, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  25. Leo in Nevada

    LOL! One of the worst presidents along with Nixon. How fitting! Poor Al Gore, got only a Nobel Peace Prize!

    May 1, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
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