(CNN) - Two news polls are giving us a better indicator about how voters feel about two Democratic senators up for re-election next year.
According to a Quinnipiac University survey released Tuesday, 45 percent of New Jersey voters say they approve of how Sen. Robert Menendez is handling his job, with 38 percent saying they disapprove and 18 percent unsure.
The 45 percent approval is the highest recorded for Menendez in Quinnipiac polling. Among crucial independent voters, 36 percent approve of Menendez is handling his duties, with 45 percent saying they disapprove and 18 percent saying they are unsure.
Menendez was appointed senator in January 2006 when fellow Democrat Jon Corzine gave up his seat to take over as governor. Menendez won a full term in office in the 2006 midterm elections, capturing 53 percent of the vote.
Menendez will be on the ballot next year alongside President Barack Obama. The poll indicates that 50 percent approve of how Obama is handling his duties as president, with 46 percent saying they disapprove.
Two of the top non-partisan political handicappers, the Cook Political Report and the Rothenberg Political report, both consider Menendez's seat currently solid and safe for the Democrats.
In California, a new Field Poll indicates that 46 percent of Golden State voters approve of the job that Democratic Sen. Diane Feinstein's doing in office, with 31 percent saying they disapprove and nearly one in four not sure. Feinstein's approval rating in Field Polls has remained in the mid to upper 40's over the past three years.
Feinstein is bidding for a fourth full term in office next year, and according to the survey, by a 43 to 39 percent margin, people are inclined to vote for her in 2012. That's a much smaller margin than her 19 to 29 percent margins of support in her past two re-election bids, according to Field Polls.
As with Menendez, both the Cook and Rothenberg reports consider Feinstein's seat solid and safe at this time.
The Quinnipiac University poll was conducted June 14-19, with 1,610 registered voters in New Jersey questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 2.4 percentage points.
The Field Poll was conducted June 3-13, with 950 registered voters in California questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 3.3 percentage points.
Democrats currently have a 53 to 47 majority in the Senate. They are defending 23 seats (21 Democrats and two independents who caucus with the party) next year, with the GOP defending 10 seats.