November 10th, 2008
01:06 PM ET
5 years ago

Poll: Bush disapproval ratings reach new record

Bush meets with Obama at the White House Monday as his disapproval ratings reach a new high.
Bush meets with Obama at the White House Monday as his disapproval ratings reach a new high.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – As President-elect Obama visits the White House, a new national poll suggests that the current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue is the most unpopular president in the six decades since presidential approval ratings were first measured.

Seventy-six percent of those questioned in a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Monday disapprove of how George W. Bush is handling his job as President. That's an all-time high in CNN polling, or in Gallup polling dating back to World War II.

"No other president's disapproval rating has gone higher than 70 percent. Bush has managed to do that three times so far this year," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "That means that Bush is now more unpopular than Richard Nixon was when he resigned from office during Watergate with a 66 percent disapproval rating."

Prior to President Bush, the record holder for presidential disapproval was Harry Truman, with a 67 percent disapproval rating in January of 1952, his last full year in office.

As Obama visits the White House, 57 percent of those questioned think the transfer of presidential power will be relatively easy and free from tension, with 39 percent saying the transition will be difficult.

"A majority say that the transition from Bush to Obama will go smoothly, although nearly one in four predict a lot of tension between Bush aides and Obama aides in the next few weeks. That sentiment is highest among Democrats, but even among them, a majority believes that the transition will be relatively easy," Holland said.

The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation Poll was conducted Thursday through Sunday with 1,246 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points.

soundoff (356 Responses)
  1. Helene

    What amazes me is that there are still 24 % of morons supporting this jerk.

    November 10, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  2. hahessy1

    America you astound us. Firstly you put in this guy, the worst president in history. That isnt an overstatement, take a look at his record. (two wars, no move on climate change, record oil prcies, enron and now a global recession). Then you break the mould by putting the best chance this world has of destroying the vice of destruction we are currently in. Well dont but about time!

    November 10, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  3. CJ

    It will be great to have a president that can speak and understands the people and is not arrogant. Jan 20 can not come none too fast.

    November 10, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  4. Dave

    Just think – seeing as how we rarely learn from our historical mistakes – in eight years (presuming Obama goes for two terms) – we still have Jeb Bush to run for president. We didn't learn after daddy; we didn't learn after Double-Ewe – The First Four Years; have we learned anything NOW! Two Bushs – Two Wars – economic ruin – rampant unemployment (unless you live in Pakistan, India or some other foreign country) – hmm, those are some pretty big shoes - oops, boots - to fill.

    November 10, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  5. HNS

    Let's be honest and call ourselves idiots for electing him and - what's even worse - re-electing him.

    November 10, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  6. Rex

    Everyone can say how bad he is all they want but, WE (and that does mean the majority of us) elected him TWICE. We had a party and he's the hangover. Some of the blame has to be put on US, the american voter because collectively, WE put him their.

    November 10, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  7. PDX Gal

    9/11 happened on W's watch. This rating is well deserved.

    November 10, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  8. OBAMA our NEW PRESIDENT

    Bush, we are so glad you are leaving. Welcome to Washington OBAMA!

    November 10, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  9. Georgia Voter

    Mike, luck had nothing to do with it. He did it with his own screw ups.

    November 10, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  10. Richter

    How could the Democratic congress do anything? Bush vetoed anything that looked minutely different from his ring-wing view so there was a virtual stalemate. The good news was that Bush was prevented from doing any more damage (if that was possible). Now maybe we'll see some actual progress.

    November 10, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  11. PDX Gal

    9/11 happened on W's watch. This rating is well deserved.

    November 10, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  12. gerri

    He and the present Congress should resign now.This is no time to have lame ducks running anything,not even for a couple more months.Americans dont have time to waste repairing a sinking ship.

    November 10, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  13. Lisa

    Most of the 20% still rooting for him, voted for Mccain.

    November 10, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  14. j. williams

    it is impossible to be a worse president or even worse ex-president than Jimmy Carter..

    November 10, 2008 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  15. Proud American

    Awww I bet Mr Bush, is very proud of his record or should i say "achievement!!??"

    November 10, 2008 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  16. ChrisB

    What's really, really sad about this whole thing is that it took this long for the majority of voting Americans to finally realize his ineptitude. He should have been outta there after 4 years, not 8. Why did it take a hurricane, and then a collapsing economy, for people to finally see the truth?

    November 10, 2008 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  17. Carl

    It looks like it will go from worst to best! Compared to Bush, Obama will seem like the best president in History! Hopefully, he can stand up to his promises and rise to our expectations in these troubling times.

    November 10, 2008 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  18. BROOKLYN

    That has to hurt...

    Of the subject, I personally (well, I share this with most people I know) am very upset about recent stories on CNN stating that Black Church leaders were calling Obama their "Messiah"... That is just flat out sick.

    The man is HALF WHITE people... For God sake, get over it!!!! Yes, it is historic that a part black man has been elected, he was elected because he was the right person of the choices we had, for the job...

    Messiah??? That is so totally disturbing.

    November 10, 2008 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  19. janine

    Super D- 9/11 happened during Bush's watch. You honestly think he kept us safe. Tell that to the people that died on 9/11. Oh yeah, you can't. Idiot.

    November 10, 2008 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  20. Maggie in SC

    I believe people should halt their ratings until 2012. The Bush ratings will change in the future. The ones bashing him now are most likely the ones who voted for obama and the Republicans who know they are at fault for his unpopularity at this time. He is a man who has kept us safe for 8 years. If that does not count for loyaly then I do not know what will. He is not easily intimidated and I am proud to say I stand behind him then and now. There is so much corruption in the ones who have given him advise and now they are like rats who have abdomned ship. I have seen how all units and branches of the milatary cheer and support him. I do not believe we will see that this next 4 years.

    November 10, 2008 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  21. Dave

    Time to stop kicking this fool while he's down and about to be out. He's irrelevant and soon to be an ex-President, thank God. Let's look to the future and our 44th President, Barack Obama.

    Yes we can!

    November 10, 2008 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  22. Kurt

    November 10th, 2008 11:58 am ET

    The President's approval rating should not be mentioned without also stating the approval rating of congress.

    While The President's is low….Congress is and has been lower for many months.
    ____________
    There is no single member of Congress, either party, whose approval rating is as low at Bush's. You are comparing apples and oranges.
    If you are not bright enough to understand that, I am wagering you voted McCain.

    November 10, 2008 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  23. MGB in Houston

    Since Florida opened the door for this past 8 years, let FLORIDA take him! We dont want him back here in Texas. You all can keep him

    November 10, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  24. J S Ragman

    I always laugh whenever one of the few true-believers use the tired response "We have not had another terrorist attack since 2001!" when they are defending our current Clown President. Have any of these pea-brains ever stopped to realize that nothing of the magnitude of 9/11/01 had ever occurred UNTIL this Clown was in office.

    November 10, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  25. Loueez/MN

    geez lou-eez you guys...hateful much? I'm not a big W supporter, but I don't think he was simply schemeing away trying to make everyone's lives miserable – pretty sure he was just trying to do what was right with the information he had. So he kind of sucked as a president, don't condemn the man to Hell for it – just be glad he's leaving!

    November 10, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
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