March 22nd, 2010
11:07 PM ET
4 years ago

CNN poll: Majority disapprove of Obama for first time

A new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll reveals that 51 percent of respondents disapprove of President Obama's job performance.
A new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll reveals that 51 percent of respondents disapprove of President Obama's job performance.

Washington (CNN) – For the first time, a CNN poll has found that a majority of Americans disapprove of President Obama's job performance.

According to a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll released Monday, 51 percent of respondents disapprove of Obama's job performance and 46 percent approve of it.

Full results (pdf)

Obama's approval rating has dropped steadily each month since December, when it was 54 percent. His highest approval rating in a CNN poll was 76 percent in February 2009 shortly after he took office.

The new poll was conducted before the House on Sunday narrowly approved the Obama administration's signature domestic policy proposal: health care reform.

The measure, which Obama plans to sign on Tuesday, represents the biggest expansion of federal health care guarantees since Medicare and Medicaid were enacted more than four decades ago.

In fact, health care was the policy area that drew the second highest negative rating, with 58 percent registering disapproval. The highest negative rating was 62 percent for his handling of the federal deficit.

While his performance ratings have slid, Americans personally like Obama. The poll found that 70 percent of respondents approve of him as a person, and only 25 percent disapprove.

On the economy overall, 54 percent disapprove of his work and 43 percent approve. He scored well for his handling of the environment and education, as well as on national security.

"Obama scores some of his best numbers on 'commander-in-chief' issues - Afghanistan, Iraq, and terrorism," said Keating Holland, CNN polling director. "In January, 51% approved of Obama's handling of Afghanistan; that number is now 55%, an indication that the public has a positive view of the latest military offensive in that country."

The CNN poll was conducted on March 19-21 through telephone interviews with 1,030 adult Americans. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.


Filed under: CNN poll • Extra • Popular Posts • President Obama
soundoff (302 Responses)
  1. Will 18E

    Sure maybe so, but his approval rating is still near 100% higher than Bush W.

    March 22, 2010 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  2. Nick San Diego

    It's no wonder with all the FEAR being spread by the Republicans. But as the troops start to come home and the public gets to really understand that this Health Bill is the first step thats needed, his approval ratings will go up again.It's a long way to November

    March 22, 2010 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  3. jim livingston

    The President seems like a nice enough fellow, I just dont want him running the country.

    March 22, 2010 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  4. Ian, Philadelphia PA

    Gee, I wonder why?

    March 22, 2010 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  5. Grrr-Awful-O

    All the democrats' approval ratings are dropping like rocks. Can't imagine why...

    March 22, 2010 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  6. reggie

    WOW, that's much worse than Bush. Can we have Bush back, please?

    OBAMA IS A JOKE!!!!

    March 22, 2010 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  7. Wendy

    Nobody polled me, I love the President and approve of his leadership skills. Any polls you take depends on the people you asked on that particular day.

    March 22, 2010 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  8. TheTruthForOnce, NOT BS

    At least he stands on his convictions. Health Care was so discussed at every debate through the campaign season. Now everyone is acting as if this is all new. The republicans of course don't have any ideas worth 2 cents but they want to stop anything and everything unless it comes out of their mouths. The republicans stood by while Bush took away our privacy and many of our rights while murdering people in Iraq. Where were all of you nay sayers when this was going on? The way it appears is that you love to kill people and hate to help people. Maybe that's what the true republican is these days – kill people is good, help people is bad.

    March 22, 2010 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  9. penVK

    Im sure that this poll is skewed some what , i mean he has outclassed both Bush's in terms of accomplishments , he has been resilient with the crap he inherited from 8 years republican rule , and now with this health care bill going thru, IMO he's a lock for a second term .. looking at Mccain and the republicans and the way they oppose everything obama , the GOP look like a bunch of racist losers without a plan

    March 22, 2010 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  10. Brandon

    I think Pres. Obama is doing the best he can. The fact that he got Health Care Reform is a BIG PLUS. I am not regretting my vote for him, and I would vote again. Besides when the GOP was in power, they could have done this but CHOSE NOT TO DO ANYTHING BUT CUT TAXES FOR THEIR RICH BUDDIES.

    March 22, 2010 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  11. Kevin in Ohio

    No surprise.

    But Obama doesn't care.... he will continue his mission of destroying this nation and becoming a socialist dictator. 2012 may be the last and only chance to vote him out of office, as I have no doubt he will ignore the Constitution limit on presidential term limits.

    March 22, 2010 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  12. janice sims

    Please tell me who you are polling? How about asking everyday people like me! Don't assume that your polls reflect an accurate sampling of the American people-BECAUSE THEY DON't! I am fed up with fake data obtained by selctive polling!

    March 22, 2010 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  13. Joe Gadway

    this guy is a total loser. It makes you wonder who he working for as the country becomes more like Europe everyday he is in office. He certainly isnt working for us.

    March 22, 2010 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  14. Jarod from San Diego

    1030 peoples opinion is indicative of the nations mood? Are you serious? In that case, I asked five other people those same questions and in our poll, we all gave him 100% approval rating on his job performance with a ZERO margin for error. Print that!

    March 22, 2010 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  15. SaneDiego

    Yeah, and the majority of 5yr olds believe in Santa. Doesn't make them right.

    March 22, 2010 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  16. PS

    "The CNN poll was conducted on March 19-21 through telephone interviews with 1,030 adult Americans."

    C'mon CNN. Are you telling me that using the telephone is an accurate cross-section of America. What percentage of people of voting age under 30 even have a land line anymore?

    With a majority of young people supporting Obama, I'd be curious to see what happens to the polls if they were able to call cell phones.

    March 22, 2010 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  17. Jarod from San Diego

    1030 peoples opinion is indicative of the nations mood? Are you serious? In that case, I've asked five other people those same questions and in our poll, we all gave him 100% approval rating on his job performance with a ZERO margin for error. Print that!

    March 22, 2010 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  18. Save America, impeach the treasonous republicans

    In today's anti incumbent mood, it is good to see he is still above the republicans. When people find out that the GOP and Fox have been lying, he will be fine. Obama 2012.

    March 22, 2010 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  19. Moogie

    The presidents who are considered the greatest of all time have all had low numbers are certain times. A great man has to make tough and unpopular decisions. Obama has done nothing but been a strong leader, a complete transformation from the week totalitarianistic leadership we were under, under Bush.

    March 22, 2010 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  20. Jenn, Philadelphia

    I'm sure others will complain that it can't be accurate because you only polled 1,030 people. What they won't take into consideration is that those are probably people who are unemployed and have noticed that he's done nothing for them while pushing a bill many people don't want.

    March 22, 2010 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  21. Rod Couch

    This poll is hilarious!

    The United States was on the brink of collapse when he took over and now we are finally digging our way out. That's what happens when the Republicans have control of the House, the Senate and the White House. It last happened prior to the Great Depression and we all know what that was like.

    It took years for everyone that remembered what the Republicans did to die so that they could gain power again and alas, look what they did–the Great Recession.

    People don't forgive easiliy when they lose their house and job–we all know it was because of the Republicans. The party of the rich and greedy is always supposed to be a minority party because they only look out for themselves.

    Obama has done a masterful job of rebuilding the country,. Kudos!!!

    March 22, 2010 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  22. Jeanette Dalgado

    Americans need their heads examined. WHAT'S NOT TO LIKE IN PRESIDENT OBAMA people!!!!! For the first time in years we have a president who is actually DOING SOMETHING for the people!!!!!

    March 22, 2010 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  23. Reese

    This is supposed to surprise me? I wanted to vote for HRC, who I think would have made an excellent President. Unfortunately, too many people thought Obama with zero experience was "cool".

    March 22, 2010 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  24. lila

    Really? I approve it now more than I have in a year. 3 months ago i was rather disgusted with him even.

    March 22, 2010 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  25. dark days

    Yawn. Up one day, down the next. Next week, after a number of public appearances explaining the health care bill for the confused, his numbers will be up again.

    March 22, 2010 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
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