December 17th, 2013
12:22 PM ET
9 months ago

Poll: Obama loses large lead over GOP on key issues

Washington (CNN) - Talk about a turnaround.

According to a new ABC News/Washington Post poll, 45% of Americans say they trust Republicans to do a better job handling the economy, with 41% saying they have more trust in President Barack Obama.

It was a different story last December, when the President fresh off re-election had a 54%-36% advantage on the same question. That's a 22 percentage point swing over the past year.

The survey also indicates that Obama's 58%-32% advantage over the GOP last December on protecting the middle class has shrunk to a 46%-40% edge now.

And the President's 50%-35% advantage over Congressional Republicans a year ago on doing a better job coping with the main problems the nation faces has disappeared, with the public now split at 41%.

According to the poll, Obama's lost ground on these measures with women, liberals and younger Americans, all key supporters.

Overall, Obama has a 43% approval rating in the new poll, with 55% giving him a thumbs down on how he's performing in the White House.

The President stood at 54%-42% approval/disapproval last December, a month after his 2012 re-election victory.

The ABC News/Washington Post poll's presidential approval rating is in the same ballpark as just about all the other recent non-partisan, live operator national surveys, which put Obama in the low 40's to upper 30's.

The President's approval ratings started declining in most national surveys starting in June, as Obama dealt with one controversy after another.

There were leaks about National Security Agency surveillance as well as revelations about IRS targeting of conservative groups. This all was followed by the disastrous rollout of Obamacare and controversy over Obama's promises that Americans could keep their current insurance coverage under the new health law if they chose. Many cannot.

Majority support budget deal

The survey indicates that half the public approves of the budget agreement that overwhelming passed the House last week and Tuesday easily cleared procedural hurdles in the Senate.

According to the survey, 35% give the deal, struck by Republican House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan and his Democratic Senate counterpart Patty Murray, a thumbs down.

The poll indicates a partisan divide - with 61% of Democrats and 52% of Independents, but only 39% of Republicans, supporting the deal. The agreement would set spending levels, reduce the deficit, relieve some of the forced spending cuts known as sequestration, and would prevent another government shutdown in January, when current funding runs out.

The ABC News/Washington Post poll was conducted December 12-15, with 1,005 adults nationwide questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.


Filed under: Economy • Polls • President Obama
soundoff (65 Responses)
  1. tom l

    When you have a man in office that can't even tell the truth about the simplest of things like never meeting his uncle when he lived with his uncle this is what happens. Once? Ok. Twice? Now you should be concerned. But countless times? You lose the trust of the American people.

    December 17, 2013 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  2. Sniffit

    Another thing that changed in the interim: ownership of the Washington Post.

    December 17, 2013 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  3. current state of the union

    This is exactly why the gop.has a 24/7/365 propaganda machine, aka fox ( news? ). Tell the same lie enough times and the weak minded will believe

    December 17, 2013 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  4. smith

    Looks like the shoe is on the other foot. This trend wilcontinue into 2014 all the way to 2016.2016, the end of Obama, the ACA, and of radical liberalism. Christie 2016 for sure.

    December 17, 2013 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  5. Tampa Tim

    Where could you find 45 people who approve of the way republicans handle the economy? I think the poll is out of alignment with most Americans.

    December 17, 2013 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  6. Rudy NYC

    These poll results are going to be ammunition for the far right wing to use against establishment Republicans.

    December 17, 2013 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  7. Fair is Fair

    Winning

    "Think of the amount of interest alone we have to pay on that debt and how much of a waste of money that is."
    ------–
    At 1% interest, it's $170 Billion per year. That's just to service the debt... not retiring a single dime of it. When interest rates go up – which they inevitably have to – takes this number with them. 5% = $850 Billion per year. That's when you stick a fork in us... we're done.

    December 17, 2013 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  8. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    Oh yes! More biased polls being reported by conservative leaning CNN. I trust the GOTP as much as I believe I can toss an elephant. Here are the promises the President made and kept that I care about:

    Reform Healthcare – check
    Capture/Kill Bin Laden – check
    End the Iraq War – check
    Fair pay for women – check
    Economic Recovery – check

    GOTP
    -----
    Jobs – ***crickets***

    December 17, 2013 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  9. Joan

    These polls were based on land line phone calls to roughly 1,000 people. How can that possibly reflect the true feelings of hundreds of millions of people?. Get real. Most younger people work through the day and use cell phones so you are getting older, white folks who tend to lean Republican when you do this kind of poll. Everyone knows that polls can be tilted towards specific outcomes by the wording of the questions, what time of day the calls are made, what parts of the country are called, etc. I could do polls where I live and get totally different results by calling different parts of the area and at different times of the day. It is all relevant. It is cool right now to snipe at the President because it appeases some influential, rich groups but it will all swing back and they will be eating crow. How about doing a poll about how much faith people put into polls? Now that would be interesting.

    December 17, 2013 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  10. current state of the union

    @fair, and that's why we play nice with the likes of China

    December 17, 2013 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  11. Malory Archer

    tom l

    @Mallory
    tom l

    @Mallory
    "You only want the WH's numbers included because they're five times higher than the rethugs, and including the WH in the numbers would increase the rethug number exponentially."

    =====================

    Remember when you told me, quite angrily, that you don't call others names when I said I hope you don't have kids? You told me to put up or shut up. I have put up. Again, I really hope that you don't have children. Namecalling due to the fact that someone has a difference of opinion is no way to state your point. It is a terrible lesson to teach your kids. I really hope you don't have any because all you would be doing is raising someone who is not tolerant of other's viewpoints. Clearly, liberals have no sense of self awareness.

    Remember when you told me, quite angrily, that you don't call others names when I said I hope you don't have kids? You told me to put up or shut up. I have put up. Again, I really hope that you don't have children. Namecalling due to the fact that someone has a difference of opinion is no way to state your point. It is a terrible lesson to teach your kids. I really hope you don't have any because all you would be doing is raising someone who is not tolerant of other's viewpoints. Clearly, liberals have no sense of self awareness.

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Yes, I remember it well. It’s adorable and quite telling how you left out the ad hominem attack you launched against me with absolutely no context and not in response to something that I posted; just a whole lot of venom spewing – ON A MESSAGE BOARD WHERE I WASN'T EVEN POSTING UNTIL I SAW YOUR RANT NO LESS – to which I asked, and with NO anger BTW, what I posted to warrant such an assault, and all you responded with was that I do it all the time, and I challenged you to show me where I verbally assaulted and name-called another poster for something they posted that I didn't like. Your attempt to use my above referenced post as some sort of equivalence is laughable at best, but mostly pathetic. Additionally, YOU FAILED to advise WHAT IT WAS that I posted that brought about such a tirade to begin with and proceeded to spew EVEN MORE venom! Care to try again? No? Didn't think so, but thanks so much for playing!

    December 17, 2013 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  12. Fair is Fair

    "According to the poll, Obama's lost ground on these measures with women, liberals and younger Americans, all key supporters. Overall, Obama has a 43% approval rating in the new poll, with 55% giving him a thumbs down on how he's performing in the White House."
    --------
    Oooooooooooooo... "the gang" isn't going to like that...

    December 17, 2013 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  13. rs

    Given the positively horrific (and largely unfactual) media coverage since the GOP's failed coup d'etat in October it has been open season on the President- and there are the results. Not to worry, the GOP is still out there, attempting to regulate the female reproductive stsytem; wreck the economy; taking away people's right to vote; attempting to start wars; punishing the poor and elderly, etc...and election season is around the corner- the birthers are bound to return like the swallows to the Capistrano Mission.
    BTW Tom- The President never said he didn't meet, live with, dine with of shake hands with his uncle- that came from the WH Press Office. The President was actually quite clear on his relationship with his uncle when asked. As someone who represents the radical Right (and their countless and endless lies and delusions) you are taking a juvenile approach bringing up such a point- or do we need to trot out all of the Rights lies of the past month or so?

    December 17, 2013 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  14. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    “From my perspective, and I come from a very 50-50 district in central and northern Wisconsin, you have people on our side of the aisle that have a really abrasive tone. We can come across as knuckle-dragging Neanderthals on occasion.” – Republican Rep. Sean Duffy this morning on Morning Joe
    ------------------------------------------–
    I'll take it a step further Rep. Duffy. Your party comes across as knucke-dragging Neanderthals ALL the time!!!

    December 17, 2013 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  15. Thomas

    @smith
    Looks like the shoe is on the other foot. This trend wilcontinue into 2014 all the way to 2016.2016, the end of Obama, the ACA, and of radical liberalism. Christie 2016 for sure.

    =========

    Christie used to lobby for Bernie" Madoff , maybe when Christie becomes president he can pardon Bernie.

    December 17, 2013 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  16. Ron L

    This should not be a surprise to anyone at this moment in time. The extremely poor launching of the ACA, with the fact that the President believed there was a clause in it that prevented people from being forced to change their insurer has to be reflected in todays poll. But as time passes, if we find that a large majority of Americans find that the ACA is a better deal for them, this poll will turn around. I believe the President has to stand strong for what he is attempting to do even while he hits these obstacles. For those of you who have forgotten, the President stands for:
    1) Increasing the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour ($11.00 would be better).
    2) Helping poor Americans and those that are already sick get affordable health care.
    3) Closing some of the ridiculous tax breaks the extremely wealthy get and use that money for infrastructure projects.
    4) Making it EASIER for people to vote.
    5) Allowing women to make THEIR OWN choices about their reproductive rights.
    6) Passing an immigration bill that helps those that have been here since birth, strengthens the border, and gives others that have been here for an extended time a path to citizenship.

    These are all goals that will help strengthen America from the bottom up, what is so wrong with that??? I am no liberal, what I am is a realist. What we have going on now is political gamemanship in which what is best for the country is ignored just so certain members in certain districts can stay in office. we will not survive as a nation if the poor only get poorer while the rich become ultra-rich. As in all things in the universe there has to be balance.

    December 17, 2013 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  17. current state of the union

    If things go south with china, will they lend us money to wage war against them? They just might rabbit, they might. Insanity to not get real about our spending, I think most of us know we could cut a lot if the government really wanted to, but they simply don't . Most agencies won't share info, to worried they will appear unnecessary, rightfully so, it will never change

    December 17, 2013 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  18. jinx9to88

    When you have the GOP doing everything in their power to stop this president from accomplishing anything, what do you expect? This poll is a joke!! You can get the poll to lean anyway you want if you ask the question the right way. Only poll I believe is the final election polls in November.

    December 17, 2013 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  19. Would You Look at That

    I love how all the liberals on this sight proclaim that any poll favoring republicans is due to "right wing biased media outlets," but when polls are in favor of their beloved one, it's immediately unbiased, fair, and is without any political affiliation... give me a break you partisan hacks.

    December 17, 2013 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  20. Ron L

    One other thing everyone seems to forget. There are 3 million more jobs JUST because the President did not allow the car industry to fold. IF GM and Chrysler would have filed for bankruptcy they would have DIED along with 100's of thousands of suppliers. Give him credit where credit is due, just like you hammer him for the mistakes in the launching of the ACA.

    December 17, 2013 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  21. CryBabies

    @ Sniffet...Jeff Bezos , although a libertarian in image has donated overwhelmingly to the Democratic Party in federal and state elections. Don't think things will change much on how the Post views politics....although he did say he wasn't pleased with the way BO has performed his duties.

    December 17, 2013 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  22. jinx9to88

    "45% of Americans say they trust Republicans to do a better job handling the economy," What on earth has the GOP did for the economy? This poll is funny.

    December 17, 2013 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  23. Winning

    @Joan

    Go to college and take a class in statistics. You sound like a fool. I'm not tremendously happy about his poll numbers, but to be perfectly honest, he earned them with the inept rollout of the ACA. We'll see what they are in a couple months.

    December 17, 2013 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  24. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    with 1,005 adults nationwide questioned by telephone
    -------------------------------------------------
    Polls are nice aren't they?...
    Especially when they are reaching the last people in this country who still have land lines.
    Wonder how they are enjoying their President Romney?

    December 17, 2013 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  25. A True Conservative

    What scares me are the 43% who believe he is doing a good job.......mid 40%.....that number seems oddly familiar for some reason.......

    December 17, 2013 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
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