WASHINGTON (CNN) – As President Barack Obama approaches 200 days in the White House, a new national poll suggests his approval rating has dropped seven points since the 100-day mark in April. The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Thursday morning also indicates that, while just one in five Americans say that the current economic conditions are good, the number who feel the economy is in very poor shape is dropping.
Fifty-six percent of those questioned in the poll approve of how Obama's handling his duties as president. Four in 10 disapprove. The 56 percent approval is down five points from June, and represents a drop of seven points from the president's showing in late April. The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation figures are in line with numbers from most other national polls out the past few weeks.
"Since April, Obama's rating has stayed steady among white women, but he has dropped 14 points among white men. A majority of white men supported him at the Hundred Day mark, but now most white men disapprove of how he is handling his job," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Obama has also slipped among non-whites, but he still gets support from over 70 percent of that group."
The number one issue dominating the first six months of the Obama presidency has been, of course, the economy. According to the poll, 44 percent say that Obama's polices have so far made the economy better, with just of half of Americans saying they haven't had a positive effect.
"But another 11 percent say that Obama's policies will eventually improve the economy, which adds up to a majority who say his policies have helped or will help the economy," adds Holland.
One in five questioned say economic conditions are good, with 44 percent saying they are poor. Thirty-five percent feel that conditions are very poor shape, the lowest level since January of last year.
So who's getting blamed for the current economic conditions? The survey indicates that more than four in 10 are pointing fingers at Republicans, with around one in four blaming the Democrats and another one in four saying both parties are equally at fault.
"The bad news for the GOP is that they get twice as much blame as the Democrats," says Holland. "The good news for the GOP is that the number of Americans who blame them is now below 50 percent."
Nearly six in 10 feel that the president has tried to handle more issues than he should have, with three in ten saying no. Just over half questioned feel that the first six months of the Obama presidency have been a success, with 37 percent suggesting it's been a failure. That 51 percent figure is lower than the 56 percent who in the summer of 2001 labeled George W. Bush's first six months in the White House a success.
The poll also suggests that when it comes to the Obama presidency, it looks like the thrill is gone. The number of people who say they're thrilled with Barack Obama as president has fallen by about half since January. But the number who they're happy with him has remained steady.
The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted 7/31-8/3, with 1,136 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.
Click here to read the full results (.pdf)