[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/04/13/art.obama.jordan.gi.jpg caption="President Obama walks with King Abdullah II of Jordan on Monday at the nuclear security summit in Washington."]Washington (CNN) - As President Barack Obama hosts a major international summit in the nation's capital, a majority of Americans say that he wins the respect of world leaders, according to a new national poll.
The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation released Tuesday indicates that 56 percent of the public believe that international leaders respect Obama. While that's down 16 points from a year ago, Obama scores higher than his predecessors.
"President Obama does fare better on that question than Bill Clinton did in 1994 or George W. Bush did after the start of the war in Iraq," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "The 56 percent he gets on that question now is down significantly from 72 percent who felt that way last March, when Obama was still in his 'honeymoon' phase and his poll results on virtually every question were in the political stratosphere."
The president on Tuesday is hosting the second day of a two-day summit of 47 nations focusing on how to better safeguard nuclear weapons materials, both old and new, and keep them out of the hands of terrorists.
The survey also indicates that 45 percent say that Obama pays the right amount of attention to the views of foreign leaders; three in ten say the president pays too much attention and one in five say he pays too little attention.
In addition, the poll shows that 51 percent of Americans approve of Obama's job performance, and that 47 percent disapprove. The 51 percent approval rating is unchanged from late March and up five points from mid-March.
The survey indicates a gender gap: 56 percent of women approve of the job Obama is doing in the White House, compared to 47 percent among male respondents. There is also a generational divide, with 62 percent of people under 40 giving the president a thumb's up. His approval rating among those 40 and older drops to 46 percent. Finally, there is also an income split: 58 percent of those making less than $50,000 a year approve of Obama's job performance, and 48 percent of those making $50,000 or more approve of his performance.
Obama's approval rating in the latest CNN poll is higher than in some other recent polls by other organizations.
"One possible explanation is that Obama's best groups - particularly women, younger people, and lower-income Americans - may be reticent about sharing their views on Obama now; how polling organizations handle those respondents typically affects Obama's overall numbers," adds Holland. "CNN's poll has just two percent who don't have a view about the president. Other national polls taken in April have had anywhere between 7 percent and 15 percent in the 'don't know' category. The higher 'don't know' response might be an indication that Obama's support among these groups is understated in those polls."
The CNN poll was conducted April 9-11, with 1,008 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.
– CNN's Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.