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. Alex Badme, Albuquerque, NM

    More BO, more debt, more lies, more perks for Obama's elite friends, Gates?, more government control, more government control, more government control, more taxes, more shrinking poll numbers. I hate to say it but we were much better off with Bush. How depressing

    July 30, 2009 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  2. Tom in CA

    So it took Bush 8 years to put us into this hole, but you want Obama to get us out of it in 6 months?

    People...get real. It's going to take 12-18 months for the economy to right itself! Now it could happen sooner, but only if you want the government to spend at least $1,000,000,000,000 (trillion) per quarter! Do you really want the government to spend that much?

    I don't think so!

    July 30, 2009 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  3. Shirley In California

    Hear this: even though I am not a big fan of all of this president's spending policies, I have never and will never entertain the idea of voting for McCain/(p)alin. His approval numbers will go up and go down throughout his two term(s) but when I go to bed each night, I don't have the worried feeling we are all "prisoners of war" and I don't feel as if I am not part of that "real America."

    Go Obama and ask for the wisdom of Solomon.

    July 30, 2009 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  4. James

    Why don't you also print, CNN, that when people are given facts about the health care plans out there(which include Obama's priorities), that they approve much more of those? No, I guess it would be more sensationalist to just print his ratings going down, thus giving some hope to the radicals who never gave Obama a chance. If he were going to fix every problem America had, they would want him to fail because they put America's future behind their own prejudices. Those who aren't prejudiced just need more information about what is REALLY in the healthcare plans, and not the lies that are being told about it.

    July 30, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  5. Deb from Oklahoma

    Tried to tell you, NO HE CAN'T!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    PUMA forever!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    July 30, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  6. Rick McDaniel

    Those approval ratings will continue to slide, until something is done to provide jobs, besides lip service.

    Obama did not create this economy, but the machinations of government contributed greatly, to this meltdown, from the Clintons and the Bushes, alike.

    It is up to Obama, to see that those loopholes are shut down, and that banks can't spend more on bonuses than they make, among other abuses.

    Still......the one underlying factor that cannot be escaped.....is that nothing is seriously being done to create jobs for Americans. On the contrary, all we hear is "trade agreements"......which frankly translate to sending American manufacturing to China (or some other low wage country.)

    No jobs.....no approval......and certainly.....no re-election.

    July 30, 2009 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  7. Lee, NM

    Save it. I'm still voting for him in 2012. No amount of GOP attacks can make me change my mind about this honorable man.

    Obama/Biden 2012

    July 30, 2009 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  8. RI Moderate

    Trying to stuff a trillion dollar health care bill down the taxpayer's throats followed by 'stupid' comments certainly didn't help his favorability rating.

    July 30, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  9. cramit

    Because he lies.

    July 30, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  10. mike

    I am surprised his approval rating is that high.

    July 30, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  11. lynn in NM

    It's a rude awakening when reality slaps you in the face, isn't it?

    July 30, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  12. beevee

    I think the people who think that Obama is not doing a good job at turning the slumping economy around and in his health care reforms plan are not very realistic in their expectations of the president. After all he has been in office for only six months and has inherited massive amount of problems that the previous admin. had passed on to him. Considiering all that I think he had done a great job of tackling many of the problems and given time he will regain full control of them. I think we need to be patient. He is not a magician. Media should not be so critical of him at this point in time.

    July 30, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  13. J.P.

    What?! You mean you can't just print up trillions in Monopoly Money and everything will turn out just hunky-dory?

    I. Am. Shocked!

    Shocked I tell you!

    Five minutes in a high-school world-history class studying the Weimar Republic could tell you how this is going to turn out.

    It's no wonder the "Child Who Would Be God" is plummeting in the polls.

    For someone who was touted as being soooooo brilliant, the guy knows very little about economics and history (I mean, other than aggrieved community-agitator history.

    July 30, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  14. TangledThorns

    Didn't take America long to realize we elected an empty suit. Would not surprise if Obama is one termer that doesn't even seek re-election.

    July 30, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  15. Uncle Fester

    Obamas Poll numbers are lower than that if you look at other polls. CNN polls seem in favor of Obama most of the time. People are starting to see that he was all talk during his campaign and would just say what the people wanted to hear. The american people will soon see that he is no better than George Bush. " Yes We Can " Hope " Change " WHAT A JOKE!!!!

    July 30, 2009 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  16. Kimberly

    that picture caption should say " I used to be THIS popular, now I am only THIS poplular." hahaha...I really love this guy and know that the nation will bounce right back above 60% when he gets health care reform done, that is the ONLY thing any of his supporters are worried about. He is fine, he will have 8 years to fix the last 8 disasterous years...Cant wait to read the right wing loon comments...Remember though the more you spout hate and lies and rumors and band wagon crap, the more we rally and support him...OBAMA 08/12

    July 30, 2009 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  17. Freida, NYC

    About time!

    July 30, 2009 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  18. makesUwonder

    Not surprised. Just wonder why it took this long.

    July 30, 2009 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  19. Fla.

    Poll, polls, polls of polls...hey, did the media mention they have a another poll? Yeah well, this poll is a poll of many polls, polling together in a poll. LOL. Enough.

    I guess President Obama still has the majority support of Americans overall and well above the stagnant mess of right-wing obstructionists...shocking.

    July 30, 2009 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  20. JT from MO

    Sometimes doing what is neccesary to fix the American system is not popular but required to guarentee a finacianally healthy future. If we would have done what was popular and let the banks and Auto companies fail, the depression back in the 1930s would have been like a sunday picknick. Sure Obama's plan for a public option is expensive, but over 10 years, if we do nothing, the cost of health care inflation will be over 33 trillion. Most of that 33,000,000,000,000 will be added to our deficit if we do the "popular" thing and do nothing to fix health care. I am 18 years old, and if we do nothing my and all of our children will be paying for our mistake of doing nothing.

    July 30, 2009 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  21. Brian

    All in America had a front row seat to see our President act racist towards the police in a local matter. Obama stated he did not know the facts, yet stood by his friend and then attempted to give us another speech on how race in this country continues to be an issue when in fact the only lesson to learn from this was something Obama needed to learn – gain the facts before taking sides. I expect a leader to do just than, but Obama failed at that. Obama failed an trying to teach us about race over this issue and Obama is now using Gates and the police officer to gain back some political support.

    July 30, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  22. bluesky

    The economy and healthcare are so complex that it's impossible to get consensus on either issue. And actually, Obama warned us that these problems were a massive tangle that would take years to sort out. He's proceeding in the best way he knows with each of them. I think he needs to pull a Ronald Reagan and just get more photo ops with working people - it will cause a spike in the polls regardless of his stance on the issues. 🙂

    July 30, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  23. Ronald Clowney

    A Clowney Poll of Polls indicate that President Obama's rating is still 61% approval and climbing since June.

    July 30, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  24. Me in Big D

    Not surprised! A person cannot consistently cram bad ideas down our throats and be well liked and respected! We're not a nation of idiots!

    July 30, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  25. me

    Cnn do not lose one of your most loyal viewers because you seem to be printing quite a number of non issues.

    July 30, 2009 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
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