August 19th, 2009
03:20 PM ET
5 years ago

Polls: Obama approval rating stands at 51 percent

Three new national polls released over the past 24 hours indicate that just over half of all Americans approve of how President Obama's handling his job.
Three new national polls released over the past 24 hours indicate that just over half of all Americans approve of how President Obama's handling his job.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Three new national polls released over the past 24 hours indicate that just over half of all Americans approve of how President Obama's handling his job.

Fifty-one percent of people questioned in an NBC News survey released Tuesday night, in a Pew Research Center poll released Wednesday morning, and in the Gallup daily tracking poll released Wednesday afternoon approve of how Obama is handling his duties in the White House.
The president's disapproval rating stands at 37 percent in the Pew poll, 40 percent in the NBC News survey and 41 percent in the Gallup daily tracking poll, and

The 51 percent approval rating is down from an average of 54 percent at the end of July in a CNN Poll of Polls and down from an average of 61 percent in a CNN Poll of Polls from late June. The CNN Poll of Polls is an average of the most recent national surveys.

The Gallup daily tracking poll was conducted August 16-18, with approximately 1,600 people questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points.


The NBC News poll was conducted August 15-17, with 805 adults questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

The Pew Research Center poll was conducted August 11-17, with 2,010 people questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.


Filed under: CNN Poll of polls • President Obama
soundoff (130 Responses)
  1. John

    Mr. President, Ignore this rating. Keep it up the agenda you are working on. Don't let GOP to take any credit for this healthcare reform. The are party of NO and if you have to by pass them don't hesitate, educated American have Idia that this reform will help recover the economy and every one will have healt protection. GO withou GOPERS and un educated orthodox.

    August 19, 2009 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  2. IndyVoter

    This what happens when you actually try to govern from the center. The Right minority hates you period, and the Left majority is mad at you for moving to the center. The rest of us in the center who understand the great undertaking that the President has had to deal with in the past 6 months are happy with his efforts to even take some of this on and his ability to help bring this ecomomy back from the brink of depression. THANK YOU MR. PRESIDENT!!! Unlike many of the ingrates that will post on this board, I support you!!!

    August 19, 2009 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  3. Mary

    To everyone who is writing President Obama off, keep dreaming, maybe you should check where the repubs numbers are, and Palin's, etc. If a slide in the polls is a sign of incompetence, what does it say about repubs that their numbers are hovering around 25%. People are silly, polls means nothing, 2010 is far far away, 2012 even farther. We have a long way to go here, so get used to it.

    August 19, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  4. The problem with socialism is you eventually run out of other peoples money

    They are only going to go lower. In 2010 we are going to party like its 1994.

    August 19, 2009 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  5. alvino

    Rasmussen polls are base on what they refer to as 'likely voters', which usually excludes younger voters. I am not sure their polls are that accurate, as they did show McCain with a lead over Obama.

    August 19, 2009 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  6. barry in las vegas

    This is no surprise now that his true agenda is starting to show through.

    Palossi, Reed and the rest of the House Crazies will take him all the way down.

    August 19, 2009 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  7. Shari, NY

    Over a thousand laid off GM workers have just been called back due to the cash for clunkers initiative. Ford reports that American cars are back in demand Stimulus money rejected by some states is creating many road and bridge rehabilitation projects,etc., in those states which are glad to receive the dough. I can barely make it the job I am blessed with because of road construction hampering my commute. America is still smarting from years of wounds but we shall overcome! Wait until next year!

    August 19, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  8. vic nashville , Tn

    I won’t worry about these polls because republicans approval rate lees than 20 %

    August 19, 2009 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  9. b/augusta

    One has to consider the source of all these insulting comments coming from folks who did not vote for Obama in the first place. They know that he is doing a great job; they just don't want to admit it. Plus the fact, they don't want our president to succeed. Even though you have taken on a tough job, God has prepared you and will keep you.

    August 19, 2009 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  10. donttreadonme

    He doesn’t care what we think anyway! When you add in the 30,000,000 million illegal immigrants that Obama will give amnesty 'in exchange for a vote, he won’t need our votes anymore. You think this Healthcare is for us? We won’t qualify you watch and see!

    August 19, 2009 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  11. malclave

    What's it at when factoring in the media's traditional oversampling of Obama supporters? Somewhere around 45%? Maybe 40%?

    I doubt Democratic propaganda sites like CNN would ever release accurate statistics... they're too vested in the President they foisted off on the country.

    August 19, 2009 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  12. Arnie Jemison

    Other polls have him even lower on the approval rating.

    August 19, 2009 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  13. tacuache

    These days it seems to be the right who are invoking Bush more frequently than the left; I think we're starting to get over him! But both sides posting comments sound like they're foaming at the mouth; there must be a few moderates here – please?

    August 19, 2009 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  14. Bill

    I believe his "numbers" are ALL this president thinks about. He really ought to consider just telling the truth instead of changing with the slightest wind. I know that takes character but maybe he could appoint a Character Czar to regulate him.

    August 19, 2009 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  15. Paul, CA

    For all you pro-Obamatrons who think that the only ones disapproving of BHO are Republican idiots.....wrong!!!!! Try on a few of us Democrats for size. Ya, ya, I know..I am a closet Republican...wrong again!!! I really am a Democrat! There is virtually nothing presidential about this man as he tries to "learn on the job" and run the Free World's most powerful nation. Jeeze, did we ever screw up on this one!!!!

    August 19, 2009 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  16. liz

    Its time for the President to stand up to republicans. I'm tired of the democrats bending over backwards for the republicans. I'm a health care worker. People need to get it throught their minds, your already paying for the uninsured, illeagles,and medicaid. We would save so much money if we had a public option. Everyone needs medical insurance. Forget the death squad Americans are dying everyday because they don't have insurance.

    August 19, 2009 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  17. I can see Canada from my house!

    For God's sake, he's been in office less than a year. When you tackle problems on the scale that he has, you are going to piss people off because the realities of governing are rarely like the promises they make in the campaigns ( remember 'Compassionate Conservatism?). The only poll that counts is the one held in November of 2012, and its a long time between now and then. I seem to remember Democrats writing off Reagan in 1982, and look what happened 2 years later.

    August 19, 2009 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  18. daisy

    How exactly is the president trying to "ram this bill down our throats"???

    If that's really what he was doing, reform would have been done by now! Our government is taking the time to come talk to us and answer questions about the bill, and a lot of you people are just acting like petulant children for it!

    Have a little perspective here.

    August 19, 2009 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  19. ThinkAgain

    My approval rating of President Obama is 100%. He's a man of great intellect, patience, dedication and love for his country.

    He inherited a huge mess left by the Bush Administration and is facing tremendous challenges, both domestically and internationally. The Republicans don't have any ideas – all they can say is "No," hope our country fails and put out a bunch of dimwitted airheads as spokespeople.

    Keep up the good work, Mr. President! I am thankful every day that you are leading our country.

    August 19, 2009 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  20. John from Fort Worth

    One of the reasons the polls are down is because the President is letting these right wing whack jobs grab the spotlight and slap him around.
    Bravo to Rep. Barney Frank for having the guts to call a spade a spade. When he stated that trying to reason with these people is like talking to a dining room table – he was exactly right. The quest for bipartisan support for health care reform may be admirable, but it is just tilting at windmills. There are no moderate Republicans left, really. The entire party has been hijacked by the most extreme elements and they have no interest in a reasoned debate or in negotiating anything.
    The President needs to take the gloves off, whip his party into shape (including the Blue Dogs) and ram through the legislation this country needs. Take a few pages from Lydon Johnson's work book!

    August 19, 2009 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  21. Janice

    Ratings are one thing however the damage he is doing is the BIG ISSUE!! We are in serious trouble and it is getting worse daily with him!!

    August 19, 2009 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  22. virginia nielsen

    Greatest prez ever !!! We are lucky that the other "duo" didn't get in , with a ancient guy and an empty brain bimbo !!! Great job Mr. Obama !!!

    August 19, 2009 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  23. Keith in Austin

    NBC poll on Nobama? What a joke! Anyone putting creedance in this "so called news operation" should have their head examined!
    MSNBC should change their call letters to DNCNBC. Oberman,Maddow,et al are a pitiful example of newspeople but great liberal operatives spewing lies and hate. No wonder their ratings are in the tank!

    August 19, 2009 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  24. rushfaction

    If questions about the bill itself were actually addressed (how it will be funded, etc.) and specifics were answered, approval would not be dropping. All this effort is spent "dispelling myths" when all anyone really wants is details. Hard details. Not empty promises of "costs will go down and insurance for everyone" and "you'll still be able to keep your current private insurance."

    And since the public isn't buying this over 50% opposed to the bill as it stands, the administration decides to shove it even more down our throats by spending millions on a new campaign to promote the hollow health care bill. Excellent. Glad to see my tax dollars are being wasted even faster.

    August 19, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  25. eolufemi

    He saved our economy, and is about to make health care available to everyone.

    He's doing a great job.

    August 19, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
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