March 30th, 2010
08:30 AM ET
8 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. John

    Very happy about elimination of pre-existing conditions from insurance companies. Would have also liked for greater competition between insurance companies, but this is a good start. Good to see Obama pushing through what we voted for him to do. Next up: get us out of Iraq ASAP and then Afghanistan. Too much money being spent without any real benefit.

    March 29, 2010 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  2. Avi Shlomo

    Mitzi Butler, said"We are not stupid
    I think you are siince you are on De-caf Tea. Then Show me the Caffeine?

    March 29, 2010 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  3. Renee

    I am so proud of this president! He is the first one to actually do something that will benefit the people in ages. As a radiological technolgist in training, I am so pleased that HCR has been passed. It is going to save so many lives! I did not vote for him the first time. I won't make that mistake again. He has all my support. To see how Republicans have fought against this bill, even though our present system is failing , has turned me against the Republican party forever.

    March 29, 2010 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  4. Jerry

    to bad you are not doing stories on how much this health care bill is costing business, I dare you

    March 29, 2010 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  5. usualone

    I don't like to classify any people in a specific group because we all have different levels of education and family history. What amazes me though is that the "blue collar" workers near where I now live detest this administration. They think their own rights are being taken away. The Repubs who don't want regulation produce banks that run amok, they don't want to help the 30M people with health insurance and so forth. The Dems don't want to take guns away (lots of hunters here) and are trying to help with housing bailouts. We the Americans are going to benefit from the resale of Citibank...and so forth. There is no convincing people otherwise just like the Repubs say "no" to everything and plan to do so before a subject even comes up. I hope this poll is true and that just the angry ones shout out. Those angry folk will be the first to need the government's help. Even NJ needs help to replenish its beaches. Places with tornadoes will seek government help. So I hope people are finally learning that this administration is always about helping Americans.

    March 29, 2010 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  6. SMC, central PA

    "one in four saying they oppose all of the provisions of the new law" When asked what provisions are actually in the bill, that one in four muttered something about "socialism" and "communism". Then when asked for the definitions of "socialism" and "communism", those respondents appeared dumbfounded, babbled something about Rush told them it was, then told the CNN pollster that CNN was liberal media and they get all their info from FOX.

    March 29, 2010 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  7. reddy33

    The methods he used to railroad this through should have 'killed' it, but apparently there are many out there who do not care about what methods the government uses; crooked, back-door, unethical, or not.
    I am NOT one of these people. The ones in favor are either wallowing in money, or have nothing, and depend on the middle class. God help us!!

    March 29, 2010 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  8. Sandie

    CNN would hope this is true. But it's not. Rassmussen today shows a -14% approval rating.

    March 29, 2010 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  9. Thats funny....

    because if they had called Pennsylvania (anywhere outside of Philadelphia), they would have found that we think Obama sucks.

    March 29, 2010 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  10. LacrosseMom

    Last Tuesday when President Obama signed the Healthcare Bill into law, the USA Today Poll showed that 47% of Americans APPROVED..... and 40% opposed.

    I predict that as time goes by and we, Americans, SEE that all the LIES and FEAR the Republicans spewed were just hot air, we will have an even HIGHER APPROVAL rating!

    The NY Times had a article this Sunday about the Tea Party, turns out that MANY of the Tea Party folks are TAKING HELP FROM GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS, i.e., MEDICARE, MEDICAID, UNEMPLOYMENT! HA!


    March 29, 2010 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  11. Dem in AZ

    Now that the controversial health care bill is out of the way. For the most part. Watch Obama finally put some smiles on left to center and mod republicans faces. Pres. Obama is a true patriot just like Bush and Clinton before him. Lets look toward a better future for us and the children.

    March 29, 2010 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  12. StacyT

    We have a President that is doing the best that he can with what he has been given. We had 8 years of disaster. Many people in this country need affordable healthcare and our president did what he needed to do bring it to all of those people who are without because of the way the Republicans left it.

    March 29, 2010 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  13. RadioQuack

    I don't know anyone who can afford to pay the costs that the insurance companies are charging for health insurance. The government needs to stop trying to mess over the average person and go after insurance companies, doctors, hostpitals and such. That's why costs are so high, those companies know thier services are needed so they charge an arm, leg, and right eye if you want insurance. I tried to get insurance a few years ago and was told it would cost me 135/week and i was only making 6.50/hr. I'm making more per hour now and STILL can't afford to pay that. It would be worse if i were married and had kids. So they need to stop this mess of trying to make everyone buy it and go after the companies that provide it. Regulate those instead of stepping all over our constitutional rights and forcing us to buy something we can neither afford or want.

    March 29, 2010 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  14. Victim of GOP Taliban

    Obama ALWAYS has my approval.

    March 29, 2010 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  15. LacrosseMom


    I heard recently that come November Americans will know which party has been TRYING and which party has been........ LYING!

    March 29, 2010 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  16. Erik

    Good Job Mr. President, you are doing a fine job, keep it up!!!

    March 29, 2010 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  17. Ezygeza


    Hold to your core values. Do not pay any attention to the zealots amongst you. Re-elect Obama when the time comes. Remember how it was under Bush and how the World suffered. Those right wing folk including Mr.Beck are almost gone now. You just have to hang on and vote for hope and not fear. Good luck! We're all watching with fingers crossed and wishing the best for you all.



    March 29, 2010 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  18. kylemo

    I'm happy for what Obama has done, health care "is" still in trouble but the changes he made happen last week are a step in the correct direction.

    March 29, 2010 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  19. vienners

    Its funny how republicans are complaining that Obama lost people's confidence and his rating are down to 51%

    What was Bush's rating for the second term? Anybody?

    March 29, 2010 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  20. ib

    Lets look at these polls again in another week when more stupid stuff comes out on this stupid bill and see how they look then. If I had the money I'd bet big money his ratings will drop and continue to drop when people really see what is going on.

    March 29, 2010 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  21. Jennifer M

    (50% are fine with the new law.....that means 50% are NOT fine with the new law.....hardly a rousing endorsement......hope the first 50% enjoy paying for it...along with their children and grandkids.)

    50% is hardly a rousing endorsement for the Tea Party point of view, as well.

    March 29, 2010 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  22. glenn Burton

    What poll are u looking at????? Take off the Obama glasses you bought in Times Square ok.

    March 29, 2010 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  23. dd

    Boy? Who you calling a boy? Figures.... RACIST!

    March 29, 2010 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  24. Andrew

    He had the guts to make the RIGHT decision in the face of a large, angry opposition.He is a true leader.Nice work.

    March 29, 2010 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  25. glenn Burton

    CNN just lost me for good on this lame attempt to spark renewed support for Mullah Obama.

    March 29, 2010 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
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