October 31st, 2013
02:55 PM ET
9 years ago

Obama's poll numbers fall, but he's not alone

(CNN) - Take a second-term president who has faced a series of setbacks this year and what do you get: public opinion polls that are nothing to brag about.

But when it comes to dropping numbers, new surveys suggest that President Barack Obama has plenty of company in the nation's capital.

According to Gallup's latest daily tracking poll released Thursday, only 41% of Americans approve of the job Obama's doing, with 51% giving him a thumbs down.

It's the same story in an NBC News/Wall Street Journal survey released Wednesday indicating 42% approval - an all-time low in NBC/WSJ polling for the President - with 51% saying they disapprove, tied for his all-time high.

And for the first time in NBC/WSJ polling, the President's personal ratings are underwater, with 41% seeing Obama in a favorable light and 45% holding a negative view.

The NBC/WSJ and Gallup polls are not an aberration.

Obama stood at 41% approval in a Fox News poll last week and at 44% in the most recent CNN/ORC International survey, conducted immediately after the end of the 16-day government shutdown earlier this month.

"I don't think it's all tied to the health care website rollout or the government shutdown. You've also got the NSA surveillance controversy, the Syrian conflict. The President's had a very complicated and tough time of it since he was re-elected. I often wonder why people want a second term in the White House. They end up with so many headaches," said CNN Chief Political Analyst Gloria Borger.

Just about all recent polling suggests Americans are angry and frustrated, and it's not just the President who's feeling the heat.

According to the NBC/WSJ survey, only 22% see the Republican party in a positive light, another all-time low those surveys.

The poll also indicates that more than six in 10 want to replace their own member of Congress, the highest percentage ever recorded on that specific question. And only 22% say the nation's headed in the right direction.

"Republicans should not take comfort in the fact that the President's numbers are dropping because their numbers are dropping even more. There is a sense of a pox on all your houses in all of this polling that we've seen recently," added Borger.

The government shutdown gave the President and congressional Democrats a short term boost in public opinion polls. The miserable launch of HealthCare.Gov maybe wiping away those gains.

The big question is which controversy may have a bigger impact with voters by the time the 2014 midterm elections roll around a year from now.

"Probably the biggest factor in the 2014 midterms will be the state of the economy next year," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "But neither party seems to be directly addressing that problem right now and that has to be a major source of frustration for many voters."

"If they take that frustration out on the incumbent party in the White House, that's bad for the Democrats. If they take out that frustration on incumbent members of Congress, that's probably bad for the Republicans because there are more GOP incumbents than Democratic incumbents," he said.

Filed under: Polls • President Obama
soundoff (207 Responses)
  1. Abbey

    If the discussion is about Obama and his policies, you bet they are falling. Only the media seems to be the late to the party, not the American public.

    October 31, 2013 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  2. Sue in Oregon

    I just saw a piece about the President' s ratings and what Raphael Cruz has to say. There was discussion about Cruz' s racist remarks and his accusations that our President isn't a Christian. A young lady on the show stated "I take the President at his word, that he is in fact a christian." My thought...We have a secular government, "there shall be no religious test for public office". Why is his faith an issue at all?!

    October 31, 2013 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  3. oharris30

    I have no regrets voting for this president. poll numbers don't count.

    October 31, 2013 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  4. rs


    It's about time the American people woke up. Where have you all been the last 5 years. Poverty level 3% higher under Obama, lies, lies and more lies, unemployment up, gas prices up, jeesh have all been living under a rock?
    Where have you been? Gas is down- far cheaper than under Bush's 8th year; poverty is up, hello? you guys crashed the ambulance in '08- worst recession since '29 AND you've done nothing about it; Lies? the GOP is a living breathing lie machine. There isn't one true thing the GOP has trumpeted about the ACA (for example) or any of their faux crisis/scandals.

    October 31, 2013 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  5. Lu

    We should start building shrines to Obama at the dmv office and start stoning all who criticize him.

    October 31, 2013 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  6. Name jk. Sfl. GOP CRUZ lee&rubio 24billion dallar LOSS of your tax money conservatives,the garbage of America.

    If the whole GOP base votes for the GOP, they will still LOSE!!!!!

    October 31, 2013 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  7. Sophie Meyer

    Even at his lowest point, Obama's favorability is still double that of the gop

    October 31, 2013 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  8. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    2014 & 2016 can't get here fast enough.
    Really just sprayin'?
    The Teatards that you so feverishly support are getting kicked to the proverbial curb in 2014.
    Hillary,of course, will be President no matter what or who you run in 2016.
    If you stopped smoking the "tea" you would find that your time would best be spent in the church of your choice (mosque perhaps?) on your knees or on your back praying for voter amnesia to come take a nice long hold on the electorate.
    Without it and the benefit of time you will be waving your cray-crays goodbye just like you did Mittens when we kicked him back into the powerless anonymity of his underground car garage in 2012.

    October 31, 2013 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  9. Larry in Houston

    """"People are so fickle. If we had Romney for President now, the country would be heading for a deep depression""""

    Answer : yes we would......In other words, if u make anything Less than 100K per yr, you would be drawing food stamps, because a loaf of bread would most likely be around 100 bucks.....(just saying)

    Not sure on what Interest rates would be.....

    even McD would cost you 100 bucks for a happy meal......LOL

    October 31, 2013 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  10. Bellamay

    People do not remember what happened in 2007 and 2008. Hundreds of businesses closed, I am sure that the Dems are not the only people who are struggling in this economy. This congress is called "I don't care about you " congress. Every time they block a bill it affects this country. The Republican families will suffer as well. It sad. Remember when GOP called everyone who didn't agree with the people who were upset with the war? Unpatriotic.!!! Do you think these guys are patriotic? They are evil

    October 31, 2013 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  11. Sniffit

    "In fact, the entire right wing seems to think that the Bill of Rights begins with the 2nd Amendment."

    Haha...indeed...at least, until they get told "shut up and stop lying"...THEN they suddenly remember the 1st one.

    October 31, 2013 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  12. Tampa Tim

    No matter how much you sugar coat what the republicans have done in the last 5 years, you still have a crap sandwich without the bread.

    October 31, 2013 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  13. Cynthia

    Why are you people still polling this guy, HE IS NOT RUNNING FOR OFFICE....What a waste of time.........

    October 31, 2013 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  14. Mark in Seattle

    Warts and all, I will take President Obama over anyone the goptp have or will put out there as an alternataive. They have nothing.

    October 31, 2013 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  15. Wakeup

    Wake up America. Obama and Democrats destroying this country. Stop selling the country out for freebies.

    October 31, 2013 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  16. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Meanhwile.....who is still President and reigning champion over the shenanigans of a divided, conflicted, and imploding GOP?
    President Barack Hussein Obama -now playing until 2016.
    Thank you. Thank you very much!

    October 31, 2013 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  17. The REAL Truth...

    @JUSTME – Why talk about Bush?
    for the same reason you talk about the buck stopping with Obama. The right throws out misinformation to be lapped up by the faithful (who never fact-check squat) and whine about the POTUS lying.. yet were incredibly SILENT when Bush did so!
    You complain/whine about the economy, saying it's Obama's watch, but singularly fail to understand that the impact of most Federal policy as about as slow as the rw synapses... You completely ignore the actions of the GOP over the last 5 yrs (again lapping up the misinformation), the debt rating downgrade and the Federal shutdown. You don't know the difference between the Debt and the Deficit, slept thru the massive recession inherited by Obama, ignore the HUGE deficits and the DOUBLING of the national debt that occurred from 2000-2008.
    While you probably won't win over any Dems, independents like me are the ones who you need to worry about. We KNOW what really happened and understand cause and effect.

    October 31, 2013 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  18. bobbyb

    His shenanigans with national parks and monuments were a disgrace and a disservice to the American people

    Along with his speech at the WWII Monument, oh no that was "Teddy and Sarah"" Didn't someone yell IDIOT, wonder which one they meant?

    October 31, 2013 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  19. Tampa Tim

    Bush will always be the worst president ever. Silly baggers, you are in a a fox fantasy land, and are incapable of truth.

    October 31, 2013 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  20. rs


    Obama lied to the American people...again. Will we keep overlooking his lies?
    We overlook yours....

    October 31, 2013 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  21. SeeThruIt2

    Once the young & healthy sign up for their required insurance plans by March, they'll start making the $200+ per month premium payments around April. Their budgets will feel the pain by November just in time to remember who forced them to buy that insurance. And the local businesses (restaurants, bars, car dealers, etc) should be feeling the tightening by November, too.

    October 31, 2013 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  22. Peach

    I'm surprised his numbers are this high--and YES it is tied to the Health Care Law-–the man bold face LIED to the American people and doesn't care. WHEN are you people that voted for Obama going to get fed up??????

    October 31, 2013 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  23. stevetall

    Idiots hate smart people, and apparently love other idiots. RIP, GOP.

    October 31, 2013 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  24. Tampa Tim

    Republicans are destroying our country. When will you right wingnuts accept reality?

    October 31, 2013 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  25. Name jk. Sfl. GOP CRUZ lee&rubio 24billion dallar LOSS of your tax money conservatives,the garbage of America.

    Hey dip bell, the irs can't vote,Dah!!!!!!

    October 31, 2013 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
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