March 30th, 2010
08:30 AM ET
4 years ago

CNN Poll: Obama approval up in wake of health care victory

 A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Monday indicates that 51 percent of Americans approve of the job Obama is doing in the White House, with 48 percent saying they disapprove.
A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Monday indicates that 51 percent of Americans approve of the job Obama is doing in the White House, with 48 percent saying they disapprove.

Washington (CNN) – Passage of the landmark health care bill appears to have boosted President Barack Obama's approval rating, but it has not affected his re-election chances so far, according to a new national poll.

A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Monday indicates that 51 percent of Americans approve of the job Obama is doing in the White House, with 48 percent saying they disapprove. That 51 percent approval rating is up five points from a week ago, before Congress approved the health care reform bill and the president signed the legislation into law. Four in ten respondents say they disapprove because Obama is too liberal and 6 percent say they the president is not liberal enough.

Full results (pdf)

Eighty-six percent of Democrats questioned say they approve of the job Obama is doing, a surge of 12 points over the past week. The poll indicates that 47 percent of Independents approve of the president's performance, up 6 points in a week, and 12 percent of Republicans give him the thumbs up, basically unchanged from a week ago.

"Some parts of the Democratic base, particularly lower-income Americans and union households, appear to be coming back into the fold," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Obama's approval rating changed the most among Americans who make less than $25,000 a year - the group that is most likely to benefit from the new health care law."

Among union households, the president's approval rating soared 9 points to 58 percent.

Health care appears to be behind the jump in Obama's overall rating. While the president's ratings on the economy and foreign affairs remained static over the past week, his numbers on how he's dealing with health care rose five points to 45 percent, although a majority still disapprove of how he's handling the issue.

"But short-term gains for Obama don't necessarily translate into long-term strength," adds Holland. "In a hypothetical 2012 presidential election match-up, Obama and an unnamed Republican are virtually tied, with no significant change between last week's poll and this one."

A CNN survey released earlier Monday indicates that 56 percent of the public disapproves of the new health care legislation, with 42 percent approving. On Tuesday, the president is set to sign into law a companion bill that makes changes to the main legislation he signed last week.

More than three in ten questioned say they dislike most of the bill, with one in four saying they oppose all of the provisions of the new law. Fifteen percent say they approve of the new law without reservation, with another one in four saying they support the new reforms but feel they didn't go far enough.

When it comes to health care, Republicans have made "repeal and replace" their battle cry, and Obama has said he welcomes the fight. At an event in Iowa City, Iowa, last week, the president scoffed at the GOP strategy. "My attitude is - go for it," he said.

According to the poll, 47 percent agree with the Republican strategy and want Congress to repeal most of the major provisions in the law and replace them with new proposals. But 50 percent are fine with the current law or want Congress to go back and pass something that would increase the government's involvement in health care even more.

Forty-seven percent of respondents say that this is a major victory for Obama, and another one in five call it a minor accomplishment and one in three say it was not a positive development.
The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted Thursday through Sunday, with 1,009 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.

–CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.


Filed under: CNN poll • Health care • Popular Posts • President Obama
soundoff (263 Responses)
  1. Jesse

    meh. Polls are terrible at predicting the future. They only show the present situation. To me, it sounds like people generally like him when he succeeds and tend to move away from him when he is not successful.

    March 29, 2010 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  2. R

    He's a horrible president. Health care to those who need it, reigning in corporate creed, using his brain. Bring back hate, fear, division and President Cheney! More wars, more corporate profits, let's get fatter and dumber!!! Now get to the buffet America and watch that there TV.

    March 29, 2010 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  3. Fred

    Well it sounds like a good idea 2 me. How about some1 tell me a better idea...?

    March 29, 2010 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  4. Zuq

    It would be higher if they included me or any of my friends. We never seem to get polled. The young vote doesn't get polled. Sorry GOP, time to come up with a new gimmick. Fear isn't working.

    March 29, 2010 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  5. Texas

    Obama Victim... Maybe you can use the new healh care plan to get your "here-ing" checked.

    March 29, 2010 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  6. Whata

    Approval up? ..to what 20%?

    March 29, 2010 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  7. Tim

    I think it's great!. Now I can eat, drink and be merry. And tomorrow someone else will pay for my bypass. Yippee!!

    March 29, 2010 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  8. Shawn Williams

    You know, its weird. I live in TN, smack dab in the middle of red country, and even though a lot of us don't understand the bill, we like Obama, and we believe that he's fighting for us and trying to make our country better.

    March 29, 2010 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  9. Chad from Tampa

    Hahaha, yeah right CNN... What planet are you living on?

    March 29, 2010 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  10. sumday

    I wish they would get ready of the dems and rep and make people focus on the issue rather than the party. As far as approval for health forceing everyone to buy health care does nothing except make people spend money! hopitals and drug comp still set the cost not the insurance. He spent over a year to force everyone to buy when he should have been creating permenate jobs so we could afford the mandated insurance. Oh well it won't matter at this rate the bill won't be funded anyway bc no one will have jobs to buy it. Obama the man that sheep follow......right to the slaughter(bankruptcy)

    March 29, 2010 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  11. Sid

    I have talked to so many people who have remained on State Welfare Programs for the simple fact they they would lose their healthcare benefits and can NOT get a job with Healthcare ins because they have "pre-existing conditions" that prevent these employers from hiring them because the premiums would then sky-rocket for ALL their employees if they were hired and added to the healthcare package benefits! So many people in this Nation have been clueless to what has REALLY been going on and seem not to want to know UNTIL it happens to them! All you have to do is ask and be willing to accept the truth and ask yourself, "could THIS happen to me or my family, too?" The answer has been YES.. at any given moment of YOUR life! Thank you Mr. President Obama!

    March 29, 2010 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  12. Tim

    Also, with all the baby boomers hitting retirement. we are going to need all the tax dollars from young folks we can get!

    March 29, 2010 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  13. USN

    What approval rating? Oh you must mean Castro's approval of osama, obama what ever...

    March 29, 2010 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  14. Tim

    And my mother drank and threw away 75g's worth of inheritance. Good thing we have medicade and medicare aocial security to pay for her nursing home. You ever take a look at the age group at a gambling casino?

    March 29, 2010 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  15. SNJ

    Obama and most of the democratic party are doing their jobs well. However, there is still more work to be done. Climate change, education reform, working on the nation's energy system. But, I'm glad that Obama is looking out for the nation. Keep up the good work, Obama. You have my 2012 vote, as well.

    March 29, 2010 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  16. D Johnson

    Why do you people think Obama won't win in 2012. I am sure the same amount of people who voted in 2008 will vote in 2012.

    March 29, 2010 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  17. AG

    The polling favorable and unfavorable all falls in the margin of error. I don't know why people listen to these things. Remember how Obama was supposedly tied with McCain in PA and OH and he won by a landslide. I'm just saying this far out of election season polls don't mean squat good or bad on either side.

    March 29, 2010 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  18. Josh-wa

    I agree that all polls should be taken with a grain of salt. However, you republicans that say this poll shouldn't be taken seriously were the same ones who were touting Faux news polls saying to the contrary. All polls should be equally suspect. Much in the same way that early health care measures were found to be bad for our deficit by the CBO, and such information was touted by conservatives. However, now that this new, more moderate bill is rated to be good for the deficit by the CBO, all the sudden the CBO can't be trusted. Pick one republicans, is this information only trustworthy when it benefits you?

    March 29, 2010 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  19. Tracy

    'Obama Victim' – I can see that you are truly a victim of the educational system since your spelling is atrocious. Don't worry, Obama is working hard on enhancing the school system too.
    He is working for everyone and not just the people that would put money in his pocket. The Republicans sold out our country when they spewed their lies to start a war so that Halliburton could make a profit.

    March 29, 2010 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  20. irene

    America loves a winner. This poll does not deny the fact that Obama is a great president now that he has grown a set of balls and will not try to play the bipartisan game any more. (Face it, the GOP was counting on obstructionism working, but their plan is failing!) Go for it Obama, push through wall street and banking reform now while the iron is hot!

    BTW: You're already paying for uninsureds in your health insurance premiums because ER's charge top dollar to cover the costs of "free" treatment. At least they won't be skimming 35% off the top any more.

    March 29, 2010 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  21. USN

    YEAHHHH we get to pay for it for 4 years before we can get denied to use it . Good Idea you libs . Here is a project for you . Listen to osama 's speaches before the election and listen to him now on the same subjects ... Now Find A match , caution this may hurt your little brains.

    March 29, 2010 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  22. FosterU

    Once again a poll about nothing. People should realize by now that all these polls are worthless because they all have two major flaws. For one the people who answer them are truly not representative of the many different aspects of our wireless society(since they can only use landlines) and only certain types of people will answer them. The second reason is that polls Do Not translate to the voting booth so have no meaning at all.

    March 29, 2010 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  23. pistolwarrior

    the gop is one big contradiction. they were for mandatory insurance before they opposed it. they attacked obama for making medicare cuts while they originally opposed the institution of medicare and stand on the premise that private industry will take care of everything...ha! they claim to be pro-life while opposing bringing healthcare to tens of millions of american citizens that will save tens of thousands of lives. they attacked antiwar protestors as un-american then barely a peep as their followers resort to violence, threats and intimidation. they are repulsive and incompetent. thank God at least some Americans are not their sheep.

    the 'tea party' wishes to place power back in the hands of the oppressive big corporations rather than in the hands of the american people. the only loss was the lack of a public option, and the insurance companies still have the power to arbitrarily raise rates for the sake of their shareholders. perhaps one day more and more americans will waken to reality and a strong public option will be brought.

    March 29, 2010 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  24. SINCLAIR GARVIN

    sinclair- I believe that Healthcare reform was past due, but the timing is way off concerning the state of the economy, unemployment, the wars that this country is involved in at this time, and the divisive nature of this issue in America. Their are some issues that should have been addressed before Healthcare. SPENDING / IMMIGRATION / UNEMPLOYMENT Some say just do it, but to just do something for the sake of doing it doesn't make much sense. The elected officials on both sides never address the cause and affect of ANYTHING they take on. How will America pay for this? How will it effect not just some of America, but all of America? How will this effect businesses in America? Will this bill keep jobs in America or will businesses still look for way to not pay for their employees benifits? Healthcare should be a right and not privilege for all Americans. Is the Government the right body to run healthcare? NO

    March 29, 2010 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  25. Henry Miller, Libertarian

    "President Obama and the Democrats need to keep telling the American people about the many, specific benefits of this health care reform..."

    In other words, you want Obama and the Democrats to lie by omitting any mention of the absolutely insane price tag of Obamacare.

    Obamacare is like one of those balloon-payment mortgages. Things may look okay for a while–in this case, about ten years–but then the balloon kicks in and suddenly you're broke.

    March 29, 2010 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
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