October 21st, 2010
08:37 AM ET
3 years ago

More than half thinks Obama a one-termer

(CNN) – President Obama is busy trying to convince voters that Democratic incumbents deserve to keep their jobs, but a new poll out Thursday suggests a majority of Americans doesn’t think he deserves to keep his.

According to the survey from Gallup, only 39 percent of Americans say the president deserves to be re-elected while 54 percent think he should join the ill-fated ranks of one-term presidents.

Those numbers may be an ominous sign for the White House, which is expected to step up its re-election efforts shortly after the midterm election season is over.

But similar Gallup polling of past presidents suggests a lot can happen in two years to change public perception. After all, at this point in 2002, 62 percent of Americans said former President George Bush deserved reelection as the country resoundingly unified around the president in the months following the September 11 attacks.

But two years later, amid a war that was growing increasingly unpopular, Bush eked out only a narrow victory over Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry.

And at this time in 1994 – amid a struggling economy and legislative failures - only 38 percent of Americans said former President Bill Clinton deserved a second term. Clinton of course went on to win re-election easily two years later.

Moreover, in 1990, former President George H.W. Bush's reelection seemed all but certain given his high approvals at that time.

The latest Gallup poll surveyed 1,029 adults by telephone from October 14 to 17 and carries a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

A CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll in August found similar numbers for the president when it comes to 2012: against an unnamed Republican candidate, that poll had the president losing by 5 points 50-45 percent.


Filed under: 2010 • 2012 • issues • President Obama
soundoff (157 Responses)
  1. RJ

    amen-I didn't vote for him-I wasn't that stupid. I hope some of you you did vote for him have waken up now that we have to deal with his jobs killing policies.

    October 21, 2010 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  2. bvanscoy

    cnn has kept alot hidden with our geat comander in chief, how can the so called cnn truth squad miss and not tell the citizens that millions of the stimulus went to a solar wind farm that was already built and running under bush, another lets not look racist and tell the truth about our presidents lies, all the other stations are covering this robbery of the taxpayers money for the so called jobs obama created, its amazing he created and they was up and running before he took office, what a coverup news channel have you become?

    October 21, 2010 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  3. Jo-Ann

    I am so sick of polls for this...polls for that.....give me a break.....GOD is in control..ans with that said....Polls don't mean anything!!! Have a godd day..

    October 21, 2010 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  4. Janie

    Barack Obama = send term of Jimmy Carter another president failure.

    October 21, 2010 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  5. garc

    Yes, here in Short Term Memory America, we will undoubtedly elect another W. We will hand over the keys to the kids who wrecked the car for nearly a decade because the folks elected next (Democrats) were unable to work miracles in less than 2 YEARS. Good job America! Not.

    October 21, 2010 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  6. I Back Obama

    Barak Obama for President 2012!!!!!!!!!

    October 21, 2010 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  7. sam

    Hope the little socialist only has one term

    October 21, 2010 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  8. effelbee

    What silly nonsense, the man has not even served the first half of his current term! Are people supposed to take this sort of poll seriously, and if so, why?

    October 21, 2010 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  9. Shari from Madison

    I don't agree with those who say President Obama shouldl be a one-term President as I intend to vote for him again, but I'm afraid they may be right. Republicans and even some democrats are spreading fear and anger, along with the Tea Party. They say that President Obama is to blame for all the mess we are in without acknowledging that our problems started because of the Repubs de-regulation and racism and greed. Because of what the Repubs and the Tea Party are saying people are falling for their lies and half-truths. They don't realize that if the Repubs get in control again the rich will get richer by legally stepping on the rest of us.

    October 21, 2010 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  10. Randy

    When you abandon your base supporters you deserve only one term.

    October 21, 2010 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  11. Adalbert

    More than half is just dead wrong. Mr. Obama has done more in 18 months for the American middle class than all republican presidents combined.

    October 21, 2010 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  12. Fixer2010

    "The latest Gallup poll surveyed 1,029 adults by telephone " - This says nothing to me. It's a waste of time to base your
    opinions on what 1,000 people say by telephone. How many millions of people are these "1,029" supposed to represent.
    Polls are garbage. They are selective and inaccurate.

    October 21, 2010 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  13. brendan

    I would totaly have to agree with this, Obama is not suited to be president anyway. He minipulates way to easy. And his promises are not always keeped.

    The world expected obama to lead them into a new world, of health care??. Look how good thats turned out so far, I give him props for what he as done so far, but "The United States of America" expects more from him.

    October 21, 2010 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  14. Daniel

    His "Yes we can" speech is now " No we can't"

    October 21, 2010 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  15. Emile Zola

    The fault for democrats and Obama ills lies on them and nobody else, but them. I remember well when canidate Obama was against any thing and every thing that was Bush, but once elected he became another Bush. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that if you are elected for "hope and change", people expect change, not same old, same old. I waited on line for three hours to vote for him, even though I would had preferred Hillary Clinton, but I guess some white voters wanted to show that America had changed and just like Obama disappointed me and obviously many more, America also has disappointed the appearance that America was over racism, but the facts tell us that racism was dormant expecting for the "right" time to emerge with more force than before. Had Obama complied with his campaign promises, I'm sure that his demise could put on the same column as Mark Twain's early de3mise. You reap what you sow and Mr Obama i9s reaping it.

    October 21, 2010 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  16. Deeq

    What is with the obsesssion with polls? Didn't polls at one time say he was not going to win in 2008? And oddly most people use a cell phone now, which pollers don't call, so not sure if you are getting a true sample anyway. I have an idea, wait until the election is over, that is the true indicator of whose keeping what.

    October 21, 2010 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  17. amigay

    voted for him once and can't see things changing in the next two years to change my mind about not voting for him again. why wait for the last two years to be productive and do what you should have done in the first two years?

    October 21, 2010 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  18. Tom G

    Unfortunately Mr. Obama still has two years in his term. Considering the damage his administration has caused in only a couple of years, it is scary to think what additional damage he will do to the country.

    October 21, 2010 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  19. Guess Who

    It was so unlikely Mr. Obama got elected in the first place, I am hopeful he comes out in one piece. After all, they had a full movie production designed as Citizens United of the Supreme Court to discredit Hilary Clinton and the ‘super troll’ baby making fiasco for John Edwards. It was to then claim Barrack’s victory as magic of a Negro. Everyday ever since you have been advertising Ms. Palin.

    October 21, 2010 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  20. frank

    , how many people under 30 are polled anymore. I do not know 1 person under 30 who has a landline anymore.

    October 21, 2010 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  21. K. White

    First of all, How do expect him to fix something in one term that it took eight terms to mess up.!!!!!! i mean it was ok for bush and bush to put the working class people at poverty level and now u want mr. Obama to fix it quickly. Both the bush adminstration sucked i office. and now u upper class people want him to bow to you. Well he is not going to do that, he will do what is best for the country. When he decided to run for office u people already had a plan for him in mind. So if he only gets one term then so be it, but he did a hell of a job while he was there, and the 1st Lady is Awesome she is the BEST ever!!!!!. So go and tell the bushes to fix the mess they made. don't expect Mr. Obama to fix somebody elses mess.

    October 21, 2010 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  22. Dennis

    He should be a one termer. However, it will depend on how independents perceive his oppenent. Independents will determine the next election as they usually do. Right now Obama is very unpopular with the voters who put him in office.

    October 21, 2010 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  23. tetter

    Too bad we have to wait 2 years to dump this loser.

    October 21, 2010 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  24. skylark

    1029 ?????? OMG ! What a farce. During the campaign, I received 2 calls. Both times they asked for the "man of the house". They would not speak to me. (The Lady of the house.) Do not believe this horse pucky.

    October 21, 2010 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  25. Cosmo

    I would bet that a majority of Americans would prefer that we returned to the days when the media reported the news and did not create it. I know that all of the various networks have to compete like performing seals for the attention of a public with an attention span measured in nanoseconds and scant respect for facts, but stop with the stupid polls, they are meaningless.

    October 21, 2010 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
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