July 13th, 2010
06:45 PM ET
12 years ago

New Poll: Americans split on Obama

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/07/13/art.obama.podium.gi.jpg caption ="Americans are split on how President Obama is handling his job, new polls show."]Washington (CNN) - Americans are divided over how President Barack Obama is handling his job in the White House, according to a new average of the most recent national surveys.

A CNN Poll of Polls compiled and released Tuesday indicates that 47 percent of the public approves of the job Obama's doing in office, with 46 percent disapproving of how the president is handling his duties. According to the CNN Poll of Polls, Obama's approval rating has slowly deteriorated this year, and has been below 50 percent since early March.

This latest edition of the CNN Poll of Polls is an average of the three national surveys conducted so far in July: CBS News (July 9-12), ABC/Washington Post (July 7-11) and the Gallup tracking poll (July 9-11).

So how does Obama's approval rating a year and a half into office compare to his most recent predecessors?

George W. Bush's approval rating stood at 76 percent in July 2002, just ten months after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Bill Clinton was at 42 percent in July, 1994, George H.W. Bush stood at 60 percent in July, 1990, and Ronald Reagan was at 42 percent in July, 1982.

"Obama's approval rating is higher at this point in his presidency than the numbers posted by Bill Clinton or Ronald Reagan, both of whom went on to win reelection," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "But Reagan and Clinton both saw their parties lose a significant number of seats in Congress in their first midterm elections, so the fact that Obama's rating is also below 50 percent indicates that 2010 will not be a good year for Democratic candidates."

The CNN Poll of Polls does not have a sampling error.

-CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report

Filed under: Poll of polls • President Obama
soundoff (35 Responses)
  1. Four and The Door

    ...so the fact that Obama's rating is also below 50 percent indicates that 2010 will not be a good year for Democratic candidates."
    Oh yeah, that and the fact that the programs they have drastically increased America's debt with have been profound failures. Fortunately the good people of Massachusetts have at least taken away the fillibuster-proof Democratic Party supermajority in the Senate so that now they have to stop and think before they launch another $1 trillion failure. Reconciliation only worked with ObamaCare. They snuck that one in, unfortunately.

    July 13, 2010 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  2. Marty, AL

    Our President is doing an amazing job thus far. When you are doing all the heavy lifting, people always find a reason to complain why you are not lifting something high or quick enough.

    July 13, 2010 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  3. Liam

    Its beyond me how anyone could approve of the pathetic job Obama has done as President thus far. Reagan and Clinton's approval ratings might have been lower at this point than Obama but I think the country would agree he is not half the leader of either of those men.

    July 13, 2010 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  4. Augsbee

    Of course his approval rating is down, his work performance speaks for itself and people are upset, unlike Michelle who is an Administrator, Manager, etc...has a heck of a work resume, he is the President running the country who has no Administrative experience, never held any kind of management position, never ran a State, City, Municipality, business, County and is in over his head.

    July 13, 2010 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  5. they call me "tater salad"

    Polls are about as credible as the existence of Bigfoot and the word of the bible.......I say that because i've been polled about as many times in 45 years as I've had Bigfoot encounters, or saw someone throw their hands in the air and part the ocean, or walk on water .......So in short.........Take you're farce poll results back to the world of imagination, located just around the corner from the land of make believe, where you got em!!!

    July 13, 2010 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  6. Margaret Anderson/Boise, Idaho

    I am fully supportive of President Barak Obama. I am grateful that he is President at a very trying time. He is steadily trying to improve this "Great Country" of ours and never loses faith in what the good people he has working for him are doing. I am hoping that Congress will just do what is right and quit worrying what is going to play politically. Come on Guys and Gals. You can do it. Show us, the people, that you really care about us and not so much about campaign contributions.
    I believe that our "President" does care about the people.

    July 13, 2010 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  7. Nick San Diego

    Considering, what Obama inherited from the previous administration, one would have to give him high marks. The voters, who don;t approve of him, either have a short memory or is not paying attention at all.

    July 13, 2010 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  8. Dan

    Obama voters are still here, lying dormant until elections. We are watching, and listening very carefully how everyone is ridiculing him, but the power of the vote will always be more powerful than what polls or questionaires can ever estimate. Dems will be in power for 22 more years.

    July 13, 2010 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  9. welches, oregon

    I don't know about that – but I DO know that if the Repugs had worked WITH Obama and Congress instead of being against everything and anything Obama and Congress has tried to do – (even if they were for it originally) – a heck of a lot more would have been accomplished – jobs, universal healthcare, stimulus, recovery, oil drilling, corporations, etc. So much time and our tax money has been spent – no correction wasted – on ridiculous bickering on both sides.

    At least we all NOW know how the Repugs feel about ordinary American citizens – THEY DON'T CARE if you have a home, car or job, unemployment, tax cuts, etc., etc., etc., as long as it or lack of it contributes to Obama's failure. That's the only thing they seem to have interest in.

    I blame the Repugs.

    July 13, 2010 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  10. Baby Boomer

    Here's the really sad part of all this polling. It shows that Republicans will support their choices for President (Except Reagan whom they now seem to idolize.)

    Democrats are a lot harder on the people they choose for President, giving them little to no time to make progress on any of the issues they want to fix or improve.

    This is scary to me. Especially as it relates to our last President, who by all indications was a failure. Even today, there are still Republicans who defend indefencable actions that he and his Vice President took with our children's lives, our economy, our reguatory system, etc.


    July 13, 2010 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  11. malabar

    Any1 but Obama 2012

    July 13, 2010 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  12. B in FL

    Never seen so many "polls" for any president in my lifetime of over 50 years. Could it have anything to do with his color??? Even so, the President's numbers are very good considering all that he has to deal with and the constant "No's" he gets from the other side. He's accomplished more in his first 18 months than most (especially the last Prez). I think he's doing a fine job, but if we had a fully functioning government that would work together to help improve the country instead of worrying about the next election and pandering to the corporations things would be much better. One man can only do so much. You can bring a horse to water but can't make him drink it!

    July 13, 2010 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  13. Ron

    Considering all that the republicans have done to destroy this country and are still doing, I'd say that's a hell of a GREAT JOB Mr. Obama!!! Keep up the good work!

    July 13, 2010 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
  14. D.

    47 percent say give the now proven rookie a chance since we voted for him and we ourselves cannot admit we have been scooped, so let us say he is doing ok. The 46 percent just say enough is enough with this clueless professorial "I am smarter than anyone" inexperienced fellow!

    July 13, 2010 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  15. Ben

    WOW! what's with all these polls lately. It's like the stock market tickers. This has become a business model to generate generic news.

    July 13, 2010 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  16. Orlando R.

    Once the economy picks up by 2012 and people see he has done a good job so far, despite the republicans bashig him,he will win reelection. i guaranteed you!!! Idk if dems will keep control of the house or senate this november, but Obama will win relection!

    July 13, 2010 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  17. Victim of GOP Taliban

    Higher than Clinton and Reagan. Not bad. Bushes just used war-mongering and saber-rattling to intimidate the media...so they wouldn't be criticized. Bush Sr. lost and Bush Jr. was the worst president ever and almost led us into another Great Depression.

    July 13, 2010 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  18. Oregon Calling

    Stop with the polls! Never has a President endured so many of these blasted things then the one the is currently in office.

    I support our President! Nuff said~

    Peace 🙂

    July 13, 2010 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  19. kfc

    Let's be real. He doing great considering what he has to deal with. Two wars, tanked economy, financial reform, major oil spill, international relations etc... Previous presidents could not walk and chew gum at the same time. Give the President a break. People critize so much just for the ratings and the GOP and company do not offer any solutions. Grow up. He did not dig these ditches!! Plus no one knows the right answer to solve the problems of the US. So get off the Poll soap box.

    July 13, 2010 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  20. We're screwed

    Half of the nation think he's a socialist.
    The other half think he's incompetent.

    July 13, 2010 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  21. Anonymous

    CNN......I live right here in Georgia. I don't know anyone you polled! Americans has President Obama's back! We Know what has to be done.....the systematic and structural changes !!!!! The system was put in place to deplete AMERICA under REAGAN! These republicans ROBS America, while saying "nobody loves America, but them!!!! We know the truth. Were Did All the Manufacturing Jobs GO! Then they wanted to DISMANTLE the the America Auto Industry. Why???? Because these Jobs allows for Middle Class Americans! No Thanks

    July 13, 2010 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  22. Ridgeway

    No split here. I can't stand to look at the arrogant bastard. I will wait for someone to post one significant thing he's ever done for this Country. Were he to resign and give way to a real American he would then have truly done one thing.

    July 13, 2010 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  23. matt

    Please do not even put this man in the same company as the others maybe you can put him with Jimmy Carter

    July 13, 2010 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  24. J.c.cosgrove

    Do you have any data on the unempoyment rate within your poll of independent voters?

    July 13, 2010 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  25. ConstitutionalPatriot

    It will only go downhill for him from here. As an independent, I know I won't support him and I won't support a neocon either. If the GOP blackballs Ron Paul like the last time I will vote Constitution Party or independent! I imagine President Obama will lose support on the left due to his continuation of Bush's policies, failure to end the wars, and even escalating the war in Afghanistan. We will not be out by 2012, I guarantee and the only one who will end the wars immediately and restore fiscal sanity is Ron Paul! It's a very easy choice for me!

    July 13, 2010 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
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