July 30th, 2009
07:25 PM ET
13 years ago

Poll of Polls: President's approval ratings slip

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/07/30/art.obama0730.gi.jpg caption="A CNN Poll of Polls out Thursday indicates that 54 percent of Americans approve of President Obama."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - It's late July, a time for hot and humid weather in the nation's capital. But when it comes to President Barack Obama's approval rating, an average of the most recent national surveys indicates a cooling trend.

According to a new CNN Poll of Polls, 54 percent of Americans approve of how Obama is handling his duties in the White House. That's down 7 points from late June, when the president's approval rating stood at 61 percent. The latest approval rating is the lowest for Obama in his young presidency. The CNN Poll of Polls, compiled and released Thursday, is an average of seven national surveys conducted over the past nine days.

It appears a drop in Obama's numbers on health care and the economy, the two issues that have dominated his domestic agenda since he took office in January, are contributing to the deterioration of his overall approval rating.

A CNN Poll of Polls of the five surveys that specifically asked about how Obama's handing the economy indicates that 48 percent approve and 45 percent disapprove.

Four of the seven surveys asked about how the president's handling health care reform. A CNN Poll of Polls average of those numbers puts Obama's approval rating on health care at 43 percent, with 45 percent giving him the thumbs down.

"In a mid-July poll of polls, more Americans approved of Obama's handling of health care than disapproved," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "The latest poll of polls shows disapproval is now higher than approval."

Obama gets better marks on foreign affairs than on domestic concerns. A CNN Poll of Polls of the four recent surveys that measured public views on Obama's foreign policy show him with an average approval rating of 54 percent. His disapproval rating on foreign policy averages to 31 percent among those four polls.

A slip in the president's overall approval doesn't necessarily mean a rise for Republicans.

"Most polls show that Obama's standing with the public is dropping, but that's not necessarily helping Republicans," says Holland. "There has been little to no change in the public's view of the GOP in the past month, and on most measures Republicans still lag behind Obama and the Democrats."

This latest edition of the CNN Poll of Polls consists of the seven surveys released since our last Poll of Polls: Fox News (July 21-22), NPR (July 22-26), NBC/Wall Street Journal (July 24-27), CBS/New York Times (July 24-28), Time magazine (July 27-28), Pew (July 26-29) and the Gallup tracking poll (July 26-28). The Poll of Polls does not have a sampling error.

UPDATE: "The president isn't fixated on the ups and downs of polling," said White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs at Thursday's briefing.

Filed under: CNN Polls • President Obama
soundoff (303 Responses)
  1. John B

    His mask will soon come off

    July 30, 2009 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  2. w.l. jones

    In some section of the country if you call the same people every time you will get the same answer. Enough said

    July 30, 2009 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  3. jeanne

    he'll get fixated real fast when people like me will not vote for him again, thats for sure...where is he now? oh right, he's in the white house with his jacket off, having happy hour for some jackbutt "friend" of his, who's nothing but an old punk with a diploma that can't keep his mouth shut and respect authority....oh yeah, and i'm sure were paying for the happy hour...or probly it will come out of the "stimulous" money....lord knows theres plenty of that money for unjustified crap.....

    July 30, 2009 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  4. DP

    We're in trouble folks. I voted for Obama but this isn't what I voted for. This administration is really scaring me!

    July 30, 2009 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  5. Peter

    Its not a wonder! with the rightwing paddling lies day in day out to approximately 72% of uneducated in our society its even amazing how the numbers are over fifty!. For the sake of the Nation! and the love of the society some media station needs to be challenged in court by the public. We can't let them divide the Nation further while making millions of dollars egging racial divisions. Even if you don't respect Mr. Obama as person atleast respect the presidency!!. Time to stop this radio shows which would like to see the Nation travelling the Rwadan road!

    July 30, 2009 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  6. Marc

    Once people start seeing the reality of what is going to be done then they realize it's not a good thing.

    This is why he tried to rush it through congress because he knew if given time people would see that it's terrible for the country.

    July 30, 2009 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  7. Mr. Reality

    The disillusionment is just starting! All those innocent and naive voters who actually believed Obama's mega-promises are just starting to realize there's no free lunch after all.

    And when people come to fully accept that Obama can't possibly deliver everything he promised, the anger will go up and the poll numbers will go down!

    Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha.....

    July 30, 2009 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  8. Pete East

    Anyone look at the numbers at Rasmussen reports? I believe those are a bit more telling. In any case we have a long way to go before 2010 and a lot further before 2012.

    July 30, 2009 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  9. mypitts2

    You should see his numbers if health care fails.

    July 30, 2009 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  10. Roger

    POLLS are slipping because of the MEDIA, everytime this congress or the president moves CNN, FOX, MSNBC go after them like a bunch maggots after dead meat....it is a disgrace this president has made himself available to everyone including the media only to get slaughtered he also has attempted to do more for this country in the short time he has in office than any other president yet the media continues to hound him on every move Presidnet Obama needs to start treating the media like the previous administration (like ignore you & show his face about every 6 months) ...good example is the CNN article over the beer that is being served tonight at the WH meeting regarding Gates...another the health care one minute it is how bad it is the next is it is not going to be signed before the Aug recess & how this has made the president a failure come on you will say anything to make news....most people in the US take everything the media spits out as the gospel...NOT ME

    July 30, 2009 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  11. Jason

    Are people really so dumb that they think the economy was going to be fixed in 6 months? The stupidity of our nation amazes me. Things are slowly improving. I can't wait until the 2010 elections and things are a lot better and all these morons realize they were wrong for not giving Obama a REAL chance. All people do is jump on whatever band wagon is popular.

    July 30, 2009 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  12. J.C.

    "Conservative opponents of the public option have maintained that a not-for-profit plan would have a competitive advantage over private insurers and eventually would wipe them out."

    Who are these conservative opponents? Whom do they represent? Our welfare is more important than private insurers', which is a non-productive sector of our economy. We have no room for their profits. They are better off doing something productive.

    July 30, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  13. Ron

    I guess the right wing terrorist party is winning the media war. When you lie about something enough, the educated start to believe it.

    July 30, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  14. lindagnv

    Never before have we been in a position where if you criticize the president you're a racist. Since this man's election we have been inundated with black this and black that. I'm tired of hearing the same rhetoric on TV, reading it in newspapers, magazines, radio. Mr. Obama feeds into this constantly and is quite guilty of it himself. When do we move on. Many "white" men died so these people could be "freed". When will it ever be enough? I'm not a racist, I just don't like Mr. Obama and I don't trust him. Nancy Pelosi is a white woman and I don't like her and I certainly don't trust her. Isn't Michelle Obama proud of her mean country yet?

    July 30, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  15. dave

    hi Cnn why not drop the polls down to 5.Then all you pollster will be happy.These polls are crazy.why not poll every single American then i will believe your polls.stop these polls they are none starter.

    July 30, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  16. Bridgette-PA

    What response do you want, CNN? Just tell me and I will gladly write it

    July 30, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  17. Roger from CA

    Meaningless. Polls go down in the middle of contentious policy debates. Not everyone can be made happy all of the time. Obama–in part by his own doing (though I agree with him) and in part due to circumstances beyond his control–has had to push many high-profile, contentious policy debates.

    When you think about it, it is actually remarkable that, with all the political capital he has had to spend so quickly, Obama is still in positive territory (though, even if he had fallen below 50% already, I wouldn't be concerned). That tells me that, once some of these matters get resolved, and the public sees that Armageddon hasn't occured, his popularity will shoot back up. Maybe not quite to pre-inauguration levels, but up there.

    July 30, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  18. RAL

    I see it plundging furthr the heatthcare billand cap& trade ought to do it.
    He doesn't ev eread th ebill sincluding the bail out for all the Wall Street guys after all HE IS THE PRESIDENT...
    He has better health care and came to us VIA the Chicago Machine which is still running like clock work.
    It's we the middle class who will soon broke thanks to this Eletist and cronies you know th eone's who groomed to be POTUS.
    Hurry 2012

    July 30, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  19. Tonyetta

    I personally think that President Obama's choices are great choices, esp. for people in america that can't afford to have insurance coverage. It's sad to know that it's people out there uninsured, esp. kids and elderlies. Thank you Mr. Obama for all that you're doing and trying to do for our country!

    July 30, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  20. RAL

    I see the polls t plundging further heatthcare bill & cap& trade ought to do it.
    He doesn't ev en read the bill s including the bail out for all the Wall Street guys after all.... HE IS THE PRESIDENT...
    He has better health care and came to us VIA the Chicago Machine which is still running like clock work.
    It's we the middle class who will soon be broke thanks to this Eletist and cronies you know th e ones who groomed to be POTUS.
    Hurry 2012

    July 30, 2009 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  21. aware

    America is waking up! 🙂

    Lies do not engender trust!

    July 30, 2009 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  22. Evan (Glad I'm 26)

    If you think his numbers are low now – just wait until all the 18 – 25 year olds get their draft notices. He is planning to make national service mandatory. Everyone 18 – 25 will have to attend a 3 month boot camp and then "volunteer" for Americorps.

    July 30, 2009 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  23. Dr. Feelgood

    The American people want NO PART of this Socialist program.

    The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Thursday shows that 28% of the nation's voters now Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as President. Forty percent (40%) Strongly Disapprove giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -12. That’s the lowest rating yet recorded for President Obama

    July 30, 2009 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  24. God bless America

    I support you, Mr. President.

    Keep working hard for us Americans, no matter how hard GOP tries to keep you from doing your job.

    There are a lot of details in health care and we may get sick of hearing them, but it's good to know that there's someone on the case who is willing to hang in there and work it out long after public attention wears down.

    Keep going!

    July 30, 2009 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  25. Dan, TX

    Obama's number on health care are dropping because he is not being forceful enough. He needs to make sure there is a public option or I'll continue to disapprove of how he is handling this. He should have whipped the democrats into shape. We aren't against health care reform, we disapprove of not getting it done faster.

    July 30, 2009 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
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