July 30th, 2009
07:25 PM ET
5 years ago

Poll of Polls: President's approval ratings slip

A CNN Poll of Polls out Thursday indicates that 54 percent of Americans approve of President Obama.
A CNN Poll of Polls out Thursday indicates that 54 percent of Americans approve of President Obama.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - It's late July, a time for hot and humid weather in the nation's capital. But when it comes to President Barack Obama's approval rating, an average of the most recent national surveys indicates a cooling trend.

According to a new CNN Poll of Polls, 54 percent of Americans approve of how Obama is handling his duties in the White House. That's down 7 points from late June, when the president's approval rating stood at 61 percent. The latest approval rating is the lowest for Obama in his young presidency. The CNN Poll of Polls, compiled and released Thursday, is an average of seven national surveys conducted over the past nine days.

It appears a drop in Obama's numbers on health care and the economy, the two issues that have dominated his domestic agenda since he took office in January, are contributing to the deterioration of his overall approval rating.

A CNN Poll of Polls of the five surveys that specifically asked about how Obama's handing the economy indicates that 48 percent approve and 45 percent disapprove.

Four of the seven surveys asked about how the president's handling health care reform. A CNN Poll of Polls average of those numbers puts Obama's approval rating on health care at 43 percent, with 45 percent giving him the thumbs down.

"In a mid-July poll of polls, more Americans approved of Obama's handling of health care than disapproved," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "The latest poll of polls shows disapproval is now higher than approval."

Obama gets better marks on foreign affairs than on domestic concerns. A CNN Poll of Polls of the four recent surveys that measured public views on Obama's foreign policy show him with an average approval rating of 54 percent. His disapproval rating on foreign policy averages to 31 percent among those four polls.

A slip in the president's overall approval doesn't necessarily mean a rise for Republicans.

"Most polls show that Obama's standing with the public is dropping, but that's not necessarily helping Republicans," says Holland. "There has been little to no change in the public's view of the GOP in the past month, and on most measures Republicans still lag behind Obama and the Democrats."

This latest edition of the CNN Poll of Polls consists of the seven surveys released since our last Poll of Polls: Fox News (July 21-22), NPR (July 22-26), NBC/Wall Street Journal (July 24-27), CBS/New York Times (July 24-28), Time magazine (July 27-28), Pew (July 26-29) and the Gallup tracking poll (July 26-28). The Poll of Polls does not have a sampling error.

UPDATE: "The president isn't fixated on the ups and downs of polling," said White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs at Thursday's briefing.


Filed under: CNN Polls • President Obama
soundoff (303 Responses)
  1. Deb

    Seriously, there were just too many things wrong to believe that Obama's approval would not diminish. That is just temporary. Wait until they all realize how much he has done and will continue to do. No one has ever worked his hard in their first 60 days. I am proud I voted for him.

    July 30, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  2. T KS

    This slip is only because he has been trying to work with republicans. Clearly this hasn't helped. Obama needs to take a stand against them and you'll see his numbers go back up.

    July 30, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  3. Annie, Atlanta

    You have to wonder if this "slip" has anything to do with Republicans dominating the air waves. Repeat the same thing over and over to the ignorant masses, and it sinks in, sooner rather than later. Why not give the guy a chance? We gave Bush 2 terms, after all.

    July 30, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  4. Nelson Colorado Springs Co.

    Ok what new. At least President Obama is trying to do something by help America. The problem is a lot of people want the same old thing and want to change. A lot of American are hurting about jobs,housing health care and money.

    July 30, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  5. Rhett

    Wishing thinking. President Obama's approval is just fine.

    July 30, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  6. Kelli

    Let me guess, FoxNoise took the poll!!

    July 30, 2009 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  7. Kevin B

    The president has had take on an unprecedented number of complex issues since before being sworn in and has the moxie to move on these issues.

    Most of the crowd in wouldn't even have the balls to take on these problems and entrenched interest.

    It is expected that these numbers will drop and it only matters to GOP haters and hacks and the score keepers in the media.

    Keep working hard for the american people Mr President and you will be rewarded..............

    July 30, 2009 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  8. George

    Getting lectured by Obama is kind of like getting lectured by someone with no real experience in what they are lecturing about. More and more people are just letting it go in one ear and out the other.

    Thanks MSM for being derilict in your responsibilities during the primary. We are now seeing what an empty suit he really is. It would have been nice for you to point out to the clueless during the campaign that nothing Oboma said was backed up with any experience.

    July 30, 2009 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  9. normajean

    If the approval ratings didn't t vary from week to week it would look as if people weren't paying attention, but we are. We also know that the president and his associates are working hard to get things moving upward.. As the various aspects of his program fall into place the ratings will go back up. After all, most new presidents are not faced with the huge mess that this administration is trying to deal with.Give him a break, hang in there.

    July 30, 2009 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  10. Paul from Phoenix

    When you make campaign promises saying you will givern as a moderate, then every decision made is ultra liberal, your poll numbers are gonna slip. Same goes for GOPers who run as moderate, then follow the far right playbook.

    July 30, 2009 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  11. Kevin B

    The president has had take on an unprecedented number of complex issues since before being sworn in and has the moxie to move on these issues.

    Most of the crowd in DC wouldn't even have the balls to take on these difficult problems and entrenched special interest.

    It is expected that these numbers will drop and it only matters to GOP haters and hacks and the score keepers in the media.

    Keep working hard for the american people Mr President .

    July 30, 2009 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  12. Sam Sixpack

    Even after we are forced to contribute as much as we can "afford" to fat, rich, greedy insurance execs, taxed on the forced contribution and then denied coverage if and when we really need it, there will still be Stockholm-syndrome groupies slobbering all over their abuser-in-chief.

    As long as even one for-profit insurance company remains in the mix, it will provide cheaper "healthcare" to those who don't actually need any and then dump them on the public option if and when they do need services. The for-profit concerns will reap huge no-risk profits while you and I foot the bill for actual healthcare. Furthermore, if your disease isn't especially popular, the approval committee will let you die. This deal is a SCAM!

    Who voted for these crooks?

    July 30, 2009 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  13. ed murray

    That's because like most democrats, obama can,t create jobs without
    soaking the american taxpayer. If you don't believe that look at
    TAXACHUSETTS our great grandchildren will be paying for the big dig
    that by anyone's rational standards is a disaster. Also the sales tax is
    going up to 6.25% while the guv and the legislatures are clueless as
    shoppers go to N.H. to buy .

    July 30, 2009 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  14. SC From SC

    I guess they want Obama to wave his magic wand to get rid of Bush's mess!!

    July 30, 2009 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  15. J Farrow

    Given that President Obama is working overtime to help average Americans in this economic downturn, it shows how fickle the American citizenry can be. It is not Obama's efforts that are lowering his approval rating; it's the lack of support he is getting from Conressional Democrats. Guess we are buying all the negative rhetoric spewing out from Republicans and rightwingers.

    July 30, 2009 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  16. carlos only smarter

    CNN...when is this polling bull crap going to stop?.....why not do a national poll of 150 million people? instead of the chosen 900 or 1050 all the time? doing it every month instead of daily would be more accurate and not so tiresome..

    July 30, 2009 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  17. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    In a big family we do not always approve of one another but we always respect each other when we all act as human beings capable of connecting with one another and be authentic about all our challenges we have to face as a family! We can approve or dissapprove in life...as long as we have respect for ourselves and show respect to others!

    July 30, 2009 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  18. mike

    And this is a surprise?

    July 30, 2009 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  19. RFO

    We hold an election every 4 years! The polls are only a snap shot in time of that consists of 0.00000166 % of voting age Americans.

    We elect our leaders to lead ... just do it!

    July 30, 2009 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  20. Fort Lauderdale

    Obama is the captain who is sinking with the ship. That doesn't mean everybody has to stay on board. If healthcare reform as currently proposed is unpopular with the people, it needs to go back to the drawing board. The Congress should not pass this legislation over the heads of the people. The GOP will benefit from that, sooner or later.

    July 30, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  21. The Lonely Libertarian of Liverpool NY

    How is this surprising? Every new President comes in with the high expectations of the voters. And slowly it fades away, because they lie to get elected, they are all corrupt and under the big money influence of the corporate campaign contributors, special interest groups, unions, and lobbyists. How can you bring about change when every elected official right down to dog catcher gets their pockets lined but special interest money. It doesn't matter if it is the DNC or the RNC everyone of these supposed public servants receive money from the same contributors. Along with that the two major parties hold a monopoly on ballot access, so a third party can never become competitive.

    July 30, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  22. nea-nea

    Just because you are trying to do the right thing that doesnt mean everyone is going to be for you most of the times thats when the majority of people is against you. So please Mr. President Obama dont give up just because your numbers are dropping keep trying to prove to America that you are fighting for them not big time money makers like the insurance industries, or other people that are trying to persuade you because if you are really fighting for us in time you will come out on top. The naysayers may want you to fail but im praying for you and many other americans and remember if GOD be for you who can be against You! THANKS FOR ALL YOU ARE DOING AND PLEASE DONT EVER GIVE UP ON US.

    July 30, 2009 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  23. Predicta

    The longer people see no economic progress in recovery, the more his ratings will drop. It's the economy stupid, whether your democrat or republican. Carter and Bush senior both lost elections because people were not satisfied with the way the economy was going. The same is happening to Obama.

    July 30, 2009 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  24. miked

    Clinton and Bush were very low in their approval ratings 6 and 7 months into their presidency so does this poll really matter? Both of Obama's predecessors were reelected.

    July 30, 2009 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  25. C W

    I'm not worried about it – our country has the attention span of a gnat and pretty much no patience.

    I still approve of our President – keep up the good work, Sir!

    July 30, 2009 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
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