October 21st, 2010
08:37 AM ET
12 years ago

More than half thinks Obama a one-termer

(CNN) – President Obama is busy trying to convince voters that Democratic incumbents deserve to keep their jobs, but a new poll out Thursday suggests a majority of Americans doesn’t think he deserves to keep his.

According to the survey from Gallup, only 39 percent of Americans say the president deserves to be re-elected while 54 percent think he should join the ill-fated ranks of one-term presidents.

Those numbers may be an ominous sign for the White House, which is expected to step up its re-election efforts shortly after the midterm election season is over.

But similar Gallup polling of past presidents suggests a lot can happen in two years to change public perception. After all, at this point in 2002, 62 percent of Americans said former President George Bush deserved reelection as the country resoundingly unified around the president in the months following the September 11 attacks.

But two years later, amid a war that was growing increasingly unpopular, Bush eked out only a narrow victory over Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry.

And at this time in 1994 – amid a struggling economy and legislative failures - only 38 percent of Americans said former President Bill Clinton deserved a second term. Clinton of course went on to win re-election easily two years later.

Moreover, in 1990, former President George H.W. Bush's reelection seemed all but certain given his high approvals at that time.

The latest Gallup poll surveyed 1,029 adults by telephone from October 14 to 17 and carries a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

A CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll in August found similar numbers for the president when it comes to 2012: against an unnamed Republican candidate, that poll had the president losing by 5 points 50-45 percent.

Filed under: 2010 • 2012 • issues • President Obama
soundoff (157 Responses)
  1. scott p.

    Bush was the worst president in the history of america. All Republicans are just like him, right corporate police state garbage. Save the rich and forget every one else. Obama is not as advertised but he's better than a McBush.

    October 21, 2010 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  2. ThinkAgain

    Yeah, well, what evs! I'm a very strong supporter of President Obama and believe he'll serve two full terms.

    What really needs to happen in this country is:

    1. American businesses that are sitting on $2 TRILLION in CASH need to start spending that money on job creation.

    2. The Republicans need to stop working so hard to make President Obama and our country fail, in an effort to scare people into running back to them – the very folks who put us into this mess in the first place!

    3. Democrats need to get out and vote! THERE ARE MORE REGISTERED DEMOCRATS THAN REGISTERED REPUBLICANS! you want the economic recovery to continue? Then crush the Republicans at the polls!

    October 21, 2010 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  3. ingrid

    Unless he becomes a Republican, I am voting for him for a second term!

    October 21, 2010 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  4. PalmReader

    So, the 2012 race for the presidency has *offically* begun? And only a handful think President should run again? Darn, I was looking forward to voting for him again. Guess I'll be sitting the 2012 election out afterall. Oops. That is what the GOPers want, isn't. Sorry. Guess I'll be voting Independant after all.

    October 21, 2010 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  5. daniel jenkins

    Wouldn't matter if things were great.hatred rears up again.It's the american way.

    October 21, 2010 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  6. Ibrahim

    American short-sightedness and the smallness of some people's memories is really scary . How can you except this guy to fix a problem that has been in making for over a decade now ! Im not an american citizen but im very disapointed to see how dumb and ill-informed some people really are in a country with such enormeous resources and knowledge

    October 21, 2010 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  7. Robert in NYC

    Who cares about these polls? Most Americans are stupid. Any country that can vote for George W Bush TWICE deserves what it gets. If the GOPeantunheads take the house, Americans will really have lost any hope of for not continuing their decline into fast becoming a third world country.

    October 21, 2010 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
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