October 15th, 2009
11:49 AM ET
13 years ago

Poll: Hillary Clinton more popular than Barack Obama

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/10/15/art.obamaclinton.gi.jpg caption="Poll: Hillary Clinton more popular than Barack Obama."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - She lost to him in last year's battle for the Democratic presidential nomination, but a new national poll suggests that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is now more popular than her boss, President Barack Obama.

A Gallup survey released Thursday indicates that 62 percent of Americans hold a favorable view of Clinton, 6 points higher than the 56 percent who view Obama favorably.

According to the poll, the president's favorable rating has dropped 22 points from its inaugural-month level in January. The survey indicates that Clinton's favorable rating has only edged down 3 points since the beginning of the year.

Nine in 10 Democrats questioned in the poll view both Obama and Clinton favorably, with independents split. Fewer than one in five Republicans hold a favorable opinion of the president, while 35 percent see Clinton in a positive light. According to the survey, Obama has dropped 23 points with independents and 41 points with Republicans since January, while Clinton has dropped just 6 points among independents and stayed even among Republicans since the start of 2009.


"This is a common pattern in recent polling," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice consistently had higher favorable ratings than George W. Bush. Madeleine Albright was more popular than Bill Clinton. Secretaries of State don't get blamed for economic problems or unpopular domestic policies, and they often don't get the same share of the blame as the commander-in-Chief for international slip-ups either."

The Gallup telephone poll of 1,013 adults was conducted October 1-4, before the president was named winner of the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 4 percentage points.


Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Poll • Popular Posts • President Obama
soundoff (162 Responses)
  1. SLM

    Yeah, now people have figured out she would have been the better choice, the phone is still ringing and Obama still hasn't answered it. Too bad the media threw her under the bus in favor of empty suit that made great false promises.

    October 15, 2009 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  2. carlo

    That is not what the poll says. It is about polorization, which is totally different. Of course the person who is Sec. of State is going to be more popular than a President trying to make massive changes. Powell and Rice were both more popular than Bush.

    CNN-you should worry more about why you allow shills like Alex Castellanos work for a company to defeat healthcare reform while serving as a seemingly non-bias commentator on your network.

    Each and every day, your intentions become more evident.

    October 15, 2009 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  3. Pennie Johnson

    And what's your point? You people like to make something out of nothing important. Find a cure for cancer or world hunger.

    October 15, 2009 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  4. A.B.

    The Gallup poll results are bogus!! Hillary Clinton is not more popular than President Obama. Her loss in the Presidential Primary is proof of this fact!! People I see on the streets these days are wearing shirts with Obama's face on it. I don't see anyone with shirts bearing Hillary's face. In fact, Obama's face and image are everywhere. There is a Obama shop below Union Station in Washington DC that sells momentos, images, books and gifts of our beloved President. No such thing exists for Hillary Clinton.

    October 15, 2009 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  5. Brian

    Did you ever consider Republicans might be interested in skewing the results of this survey by saying they like Clinton more than Obama?

    Furthermore, Clinton hasn't been in the limelight, taking massive criticism from the right-wing media and politicians on a daily basis. Of course Republicans don't like the President – he's the one making them realize how weak and ineffective their party really is.

    October 15, 2009 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  6. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    a moronic poll.....

    October 15, 2009 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  7. Gary, Indiana

    Always has been, and always will be. Too bad the Dems cheated to get Obama in.

    October 15, 2009 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  8. LeAnne, Iowa

    Of course she is, she doesn't have to make the tough decisions that he does. As far as I'm concerned, the president is more popular. I'd much rather see him and shake his hand, than Hillary's. I'm sure there are a lot of people who would agree with me.

    If she were that popular, she would have been president.

    Also, Hillary doesn't have a whole network working against her, or the negative press everyday.

    October 15, 2009 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  9. Chris D.

    Sec. Clinton gets to enjoy the fact that she doesn't have to lead the country and suffer criticisms........I'm proud of her as cheif diplomat though.......
    President Obama, still has a commanding 56% approval.......That's huge......
    Once we get this unemploment rate down.....America will be back on track....
    Obama/Biden 2012......

    October 15, 2009 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  10. A 50-year Democrat no more. Now an independent with brains.

    WELL DUH!!! If you hadn't held caucases she'd be our President now. What good is a caucas really anyhow. Have you ever tried to stand in line at school and been pushed outbyf the four-letter talking heatherns breaking in line. That is what you have running the country. Thank you Democrats.

    October 15, 2009 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  11. Peace

    If the difference is only 6, then Pres. Obama is doing very, very fine. All the blames go direct to him and not to Hillary.

    October 15, 2009 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  12. felicia

    So what President Obama will always be more popular in my book. The media always tryna get some shyt started. I'm really starting to hate all media outlets

    October 15, 2009 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  13. rwh

    I really don't think that either Mrs. Clinton or President Obama care's about being popular! To many opinions and to much media has taken America into the wrong directions. Once Mrs. Clinton make's an error or say something that is viewed wrong....the media take's it another level. When President Obama do anything he is questioned; blamed, defamed and racism remarks are always made. Both of them are doing whatever it takes to have a smooth day and not let opinions govern them how they are doing in the popular arena.

    October 15, 2009 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  14. Deb (long island)

    All you can say is that the republicans are so predictable!

    October 15, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  15. FAYE, NV

    You can like anyone whose not making the major decision for this country. If Hiliary was there making decision people would not favor her. President Obama inheirt a mess and it will take time to clean this mess up. No one knew what a big mess Bush and the Gop left behind.

    I can see things slowly coming together: Economy, Overseas Respect, Foreclosures etc... Things are looking brighter.

    October 15, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  16. rachel

    Okay this is just another ticker for the clinton haters to spew their hate. Hillary is doing a good job. I wish the media would stop doing this crap you all just want their to be some war between Obama and Hillary and it just kills you that their isn't so you want to try and make trouble. Oh Obama sidelined Hillary oh Hillary is more popular than Obama. Obama is not my favorite person but aren't you all getting a little tired of this?

    October 15, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  17. Bill

    How can this be? Hillary doesn't make nearly as many tv or interview appearances and is not nearly as constantly visable as our ...Oh. Never mind.

    October 15, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  18. Michael M, Phoenix AZ

    The only reason the President has dropped in the "polls" is that he did not save the world in his first 100 days. It took years to get into this mess and it will take years to get out of it...I believe he had stated that once or twice before.

    October 15, 2009 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  19. mike

    its simple she does not have to deal with the right wing republican NUT JOBS that
    are always crying the blues on the stimulus and health care, not that they care about it but because they are looking for VOTES and nothing else

    October 15, 2009 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  20. Obama Victim

    sure wish SHE was president

    October 15, 2009 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  21. Preco

    And so what?

    October 15, 2009 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  22. me happy- at 4:20 each day

    That is because she is an accomplished, self made woman- who, actually, rose to her position in a large part as the result of her accomplishments and hard work.

    As opposed to rising to one of the most powerful position in the world based solely on the popularity contest similar to those held in a typical American high schools: the most popular, charming, handsome, smooth talking "jock" gets elected because, "oh, ahh, he is just so 'perfect'"- even though he has done absolutely nothing.

    Got to love the hard working minds of Americans! Right...

    October 15, 2009 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  23. southerncousin

    If Obama wins the Nobel Peace Prize for doing nothing and being popular, what would Hillary Clinton win for doing nothing and being even more popular?

    October 15, 2009 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  24. Amy from MN

    I attribute the difference in popularity to the fact that she is not involved in trying to pass healthcare reform.

    October 15, 2009 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  25. billy123

    A case of buyers remorse from the voters. Hillary Clinton is so much more qualified to be President than President Obama. I will agree President Obama took over the worst Economy in my life time.

    President Obama please ask President Clinton to come in to help fix the Economy.

    October 15, 2009 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
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