Washington (CNN) - A majority of Americans who watched President Obama's State of the Union address said they had a very positive reaction to his speech, according to a poll of people who viewed Tuesday night's address.
A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey indicated that 52 percent of speech watchers had a very positive reaction, with 32 percent saying they had a somewhat positive response and 15 percent with a negative response.
The 52 percent who indicated they had a very positive response is up four points from the 48 percent of speech watchers who felt the same way a year ago about the president's January 27, 2010 State of the Union address.
"Tuesday night's State of the Union audience is more Democratic than the nation as a whole, which is typical for a President Obama speech and indicates that the speech-watchers were predisposed to like what Obama said," noted CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "When George W. Bush was president, his audiences were more Republican than the general public at that time, and his speeches were usually well-received for that same reason."
The sample of speech-watchers in the poll were 39 percent Democratic and 19 percent Republican. Those numbers indicate that the sample is about nine to ten points more Democratic than the population as a whole. The audience for Obama's State of the Union address last year was 38 percent Democratic and 25 percent Republican.
"The poll does not and cannot reflect the views of all Americans. It only represents the views of people who watched the speech," Holland said.
The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted after Obama's address, with 475 adult Americans who watched the speech. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus five percentage points.
During his address, the president made a bid for bipartisanship, saying "new laws will only pass with support from Democrats and Republicans. We will move forward together or not at all - for the challenges we face are bigger than party and bigger than politics."
The poll indicates people who watched the speech like that message. Sixty-one percent say that the president will succeed in increasing cooperation between the parties. And just over seven in ten say that Obama's address was about right, with 23 percent saying it was too liberal and five percent saying that it was not liberal enough.
Seventy-seven percent say the speech made them more optimistic, with just 19 percent saying it made them more pessimistic.
Sixty-eight percent of speech-watchers who were questioned said the president will succeed in improving the economy, with 61 percent saying Obama will reduce the deficit and 57 percent saying he'll succeed in creating jobs.
The survey also indicated that before the speech, 61 percent of people questioned said they thought Obama's policies will move the country in the right direction. That increased to 77 percent when questioned after the speech.
Nearly nine in ten say it was a good idea for Democratic and Republican lawmakers to sit together during the speech, with just seven percent saying it was a bad idea.
Earlier this month, Democratic Sen. Mark Udall of Colorado proposed that members of both political parties sit next to each other instead of the normal separate seating for Democrats and Republicans, in a move to reduce the divisive political discourse of recent years. Udall suggested that the traditional choreographed standing and clapping during the State of the Union address would be unbecoming of Congress, especially given the recent shootings in Arizona.
- CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report