May 20th, 2009
04:05 PM ET
12 years ago

CNN Poll: Obama moving US in right direction

WASHINGTON (CNN) - As the Republican Party condemns what they call the Democrats' 'march to socialism', a new national poll indicates that most Americans believe President Barack Obama's policies would move the country in the right direction.

Sixty-three percent of people questioned in a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Wednesday say they think the policies being proposed by the President would push the nation in the right direction, with 35 percent saying those policies would send the country in the wrong direction.

But the poll suggests that Americans don't feel the same way about the Republicans. Thirty-nine percent of those questioned say that the policies of GOP Congressional leaders would move the country in the right direction, with a slight majority, 53 percent, saying Republican proposals would move the nation in the wrong direction.

"The poll indicates that some of Obama's popularity is rubbing off on congressional Democrats," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Even though Nancy Pelosi has a low approval rating and Harry Reid is facing some low numbers in polls taken in his home state, 57 percent think that the policies of the Democratic leaders in Congress would move the country in the right direction. That's not good news for the GOP."

Four months into Obama's presidency, the country remains in a recession, but the poll indicates that Americans aren't blaming the new president or his party for the country's economic problems so far. Fifty-three percent of those surveyed say the Republicans are to blame, with only one in five saying the Democrats are more responsible for the country's economic conditions.

The poll also indicates that the jury is still out on Obama's actions to jump-start the economy. Thirty-seven percent of people questioned say that the President's policies have improved economic conditions, 23 percent say they have worsened things, and 40 percent say they have had no effect so far on the economy.

"Obama has four years to convince the public that his economic policies have worked, but the Democrats in Congress have less than two years to make that connection," says Holland. "Political junkies will be watching that 40 percent to see how they break between now and the midterms."

The poll's release came just two hours before members of the Republican National Committee approved a resolution calls on the Democratic party to "stop pushing our country towards socialism and governmental control."

The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey was conducted May 14-17, with 1,010 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.

(Updated at 6:45 p.m. with additional information)

Filed under: CNN Polls
soundoff (152 Responses)
  1. KC

    I always wonder who they poll. No one I know has ever received calls from these pollsters. Also, how do they word their questions? Do they do so in a leading manner? Yeah, I find polls very deceitful and really just plain stupid.

    May 20, 2009 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  2. jm for sc

    Even if people begin to prosper under President Obama, many will still find a complaint.

    He will go down in history as one of the greatest presidents America has ever enjoyed.

    May 20, 2009 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  3. Eileen

    This just proves again how out of touch the republicans are from "real America". With all the pressing issues, they actively work on proposals to brand the democratic party the Democrat Socialist party. Ridiculous. That's why voters are running away in droves. Of course the disasterous Bush admin didn't help, but the repub senators and representatives didn't help themselves by rubber stamping every horrible notion the bush admin came up with. They certainly did earn their irrelevancy.

    May 20, 2009 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  4. Nick

    Obama is doing a GREAT job, especially considering the circumstances he inherited. I am expecting a continuing improvement in the economy, more increases in stock prices, and some foreign relations breakthoughs. It would not surprise me to see some positive action regarding the Israel / Palestinian problem.

    May 20, 2009 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  5. Chris

    People can't really say what they think one side or the other is capable of. All we can do is judge the past. The future is up for grabs no matter what party is in power. They both have their pros and cons. At the end of the day, they both serve the same master. It won't matter for too much longer though, we'll be so poor and down trodden, politics will be the last thing on our minds.

    May 20, 2009 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  6. Tulsa

    LOL.... this ought to INFURIATE a few of you out there.

    Mississippi Mike, Phony86, oops, Phoenix86, Fitz in Texas..... Sorry Dummys, the rest of the country.... or to use a Palinism, the "real" America, thinks you are WRONG.

    C'mon RNC, put the "march to socialism" out there and see how your poll numbers DROP some more!

    LOL.... I love being a Democrat.

    May 20, 2009 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  7. Shari, NY

    Quote – But the poll suggests that Americans don't feel the same way about the Republicans – Unquote.

    Why? All one has to do is read the news and see who incessantly speaks on behalf of the GOP (e.g. Palin).

    May 20, 2009 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  8. Claudia in Houson

    Of course Obama's approval rating on policies are higher than the GOP because they have none and want the country to allow them to resume with the past 8 years of failure. The Republicans left this country in a mess for Obama to cleanup and they aren't helping, just whinning.

    May 20, 2009 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  9. Bob

    Mr. President, Keep it up you are taking country in the right direction and I am sure GOP would not like to see this poll #. American people are behind you . GOP are loosing in every police issues................

    May 20, 2009 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  10. Mich

    No one asked me about a poll. His course for the country is not good. He has undermined the united states security. He is spending far to much of the United States future. (Just ask California they couldn't spend their way out of their problems.) And why all this is happening my state of Illinios is taxing us into a hole. Is Obama good for the country. lol lol lol lol lol lol lol lol lol

    May 20, 2009 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |

    Put that in you pipe And Smoke it Republicans President Obama is Doing a Great Job! 53 Percent Feel Republicans will Move the Country in the Wrong Direction RIP GOP BYE BYE SEE YA Wait until 2010 you will be Extinct!

    May 20, 2009 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  12. MEL

    We walking with you President Barack Obama. Thank you. Lets roll up our sleeves and work for a better future. Let's go America!!!!!

    May 20, 2009 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  13. Jon in CA

    I sincerely hope CNN conducts this same type poll in 1 year after hyper-inflation, spiking interest rates, and continued high unemployment.

    Folks – California leads the way!

    Democrats have been wildly spending for YEARS here.... creating a myriad of social welfare plans putting us $21 Billion in the hole. Voters finally had enough and slapped-down the latest tax-and-spend offering.

    You libs just keep on believing America likes your approach....your day of reckoning in coming.

    May 20, 2009 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  14. greenfish

    I thank God every day Obama is our president.

    May 20, 2009 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  15. Jefe

    Well, Republican policy is to spend and inflate while helping corporations to eliminate American jobs, which really only benefits a small fraction of the nation. Its no wonder, when Democrats are more beneficial to 95%+ of the nation, that more Americans would support Democrats. The real shocker is that the GOP manages to hold more than 5% in polls.

    May 20, 2009 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |

    obviously they polled during work hours when all the right wingers are at work. Must've also done it on the day that the welfare lines were short.

    May 20, 2009 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  17. Jackie

    The only thing I would like to say is look what happened in California. The people / voters had enough of spending and taxing. The same thing will happen at the National level. You'll see. How can anyone say he is taking us in the right direction when the government is getting larger and playing a bigger role in our lives.

    If we know that Europe is worse off than we are, why do we want to follow them off the cliff?

    May 20, 2009 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  18. RealityKing

    5 million people out of work since Nov.

    Great job dems, keep driving America in the "right direction"!!

    May 20, 2009 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  19. viking

    This President is spending money like there is no tomorrow. I hope that his girls get a good education because they are going to need good jobs to pay all of these taxes need to fund everything that he proposes! I just love here! What happened to a smaller government? We are getting "deep" into socialism and its starting to smell!!

    May 20, 2009 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  20. Rob

    He seems to be trying.Pelosi needs to resin her position as leader of the Democratic Party in Congress.She can't even keep track of her own lies.......

    May 20, 2009 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |

    jm for sc,

    are you seroius? one of the greatest ever? He's been in office for 4 months. Can we stop the anointing please??? How many industries must he destroy?

    Most liberal president ever, YES. That's not a good thing though.

    May 20, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  22. Lynda/Minnesota

    I have not qualms with the poll, or it's results.

    May 20, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  23. Cowboy in West Texas

    Well first off I think it is a little early to say he will go donw in history as one of the greatest – we should at least wait a year.

    Second, I wish everyone would stop talking about the poor guy inherited this mess – He ran a darn hard campaign to WIN it – he wanted it. Remember?

    May 20, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  24. Simmy

    President Obama and Democrats YES.......Hannity/Limbaugh and Republicans NO......

    May 20, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  25. Bananarama Victim II: Electric Boogaloo

    Fringe-Americans showing their true colors once again, I see. No wonder they're so threatened by Obama's very existence; he's intelligent, well-spoken, emotinally mature, and worst of all his policies are moderate.

    What a crazy liberal, indeed.

    May 20, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
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