November 21st, 2013
05:00 PM ET
9 years ago

Obama approval rating sinks to new low in CNN poll

Washington (CNN) - As President Barack Obama's approval rating hits another all-time low, a new national survey also indicates that Americans say the President has less power than congressional Republicans when it comes to shaping events over the next year.

According to a CNN/ORC poll released Thursday, 41% of Americans approve of the job the President's doing in the White House, the lowest level for that crucial indicator in CNN polling. Fifty-six percent questioned say they disapprove of Obama's performance, an all-time high in CNN surveys.

The President's approval rating has now reached new lows or tied his all-time lows in polls released over the past three weeks from CNN/ORC, CBS News, ABC News/Washington Post, Quinnipiac University, National Journal Heartland Monitor, and NBC News/Wall Street Journal. And the CNN survey is the fourth non-partisan live operator national poll released this week to put Obama's approval rating between 40% and 42%. A CBS News survey released Wednesday showed the President's approval rating at 37%.

Geography appears to play a role in the President's falling numbers.

"The drop in Obama's approval rating comes entirely among suburbanites," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Compared to the October CNN poll, positive views of Obama held steady among people who live in big cities and rural areas. But in the suburbs, his approval rating was 45% a month ago but has dropped to just 37% now."

The President's overall job approval rating is down three points since mid-October after being stuck in the mid-40s for several months in CNN polling. But it's worth noting that Obama's woes did not begin with the disastrous launch of the website in October, Holland pointed out.

"The real damage came in June, when reports about NSA spying and IRS treatment of conservative groups caused an eight-point drop in his approval rating - a far more significant change than what the numbers from October suggest," he said.

Who should shape Washington?

Fifty percent believe that congressional Republicans will have more influence over the direction the nation takes in the next year while only 42% saying the President will have more influence, according to the poll. That's a change from November 2012, when more six in ten said Obama would have more influence in the year to come.

Who should have more influence is a different story.

The poll shows 47% want Obama to be in charge while 45% say the GOP should have more influence over the country.

"There is a hint of good news for the President - but only a hint - in those numbers, since that means that the number of Americans who support Obama in his struggles with the GOP is a bit higher than the 41% approval rating would suggest. But that number is also a step down in Obama's support, representing a four-point decline since the last time the question was asked just after Obama won re-election last year," Holland said.

The poll was conducted Nov. 18-20 for CNN by ORC International, with 843 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

Filed under: CNN poll • President Obama
soundoff (712 Responses)
  1. Pam

    Actually surprised that it isn't higher than that.

    November 21, 2013 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  2. Chuck

    Democrats in horror figuring out that everything that the GOP said about Obama
    has come true, he really is not qualified to be president

    November 21, 2013 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  3. rwhite

    its taking a long time, but we are finally realizing we put a man in the highest office in the land for all the wrong reasons, noble though they seemed at the time. We are paying the price for being too altruistic instead of realistic.

    November 21, 2013 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  4. WrenchMan

    I've come to believe that if you're supporter of this regime, you truly must hate this country. Why can't people see through this man's disdain for our nation. Amateur, petulant borderline sociopath! What's the attraction? Progressives really hate the rest of US!

    November 21, 2013 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  5. seanster77

    Reading the comments it is evident liberal democrats will never see the loser Obama for what he really is.

    November 21, 2013 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  6. js_biggs

    CNN is at the bottom of the ratings for a reason. Nobody really believes that Obama is at 41%.

    November 21, 2013 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  7. Stuffit

    Knowing this poll comes from CNN I can only imagine that the real rating is closer to 31%. I imagine talso that he has slipped to 99% in the MSNBC poll.

    November 21, 2013 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  8. Aleksey Volchek

    CNN should poll if people are still believing in US government's power to actually represent American people's interests. in the last year it is VERY clear that the interests of middle class are not represented at ALL. If a corp wants a rule to be swayed their way, they send a lobbyist. But if people want to change something they need to protest and face criminal charges. What kind of government is that?! It's a false government with 0 representation of people's interests. A facade.

    November 21, 2013 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  9. Jum57

    The president's poll numbers are down – no problem – he will give a speech – the press will report its absolute magnificence – the people will hear (and read) the press accoints regarding the magnificence of the president's words and vision (with a reminder or ten regarding the dastardly republicans and racist tea party) and presto – the president's approval ratings will soar!'

    November 21, 2013 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  10. Wake up People!

    I'd vote for him again if I could. Best POTUS of my generation, hands down.

    November 21, 2013 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  11. Hell No!

    This piece of garbage we have as a President fancies himself as a Communist Dictator and his communist Dems are happy to help prop him up. What the heck does he care about polls? He isn't running for office again. If any Dem wants his help they will have to pay$$$$$$ him for it. For King Barry it's all about the ego and the dollars. His ratings could be subartic and he'd not give a damn,,he has a job to do and that's to bring division, poverty, and third-world status Communism to America. His OFA minions applaud!

    November 21, 2013 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  12. daveugber

    Tampa Tim – all the DOW represents is the rich getting richer, because of the zero-interest loans they are getting to the tune of $84 BILLION/month...borrow/invest/pay's a sham...and if killing bin laden is the highlight of Barack Obama's Presidency, then he is a total loser...

    November 21, 2013 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  13. Todd P.

    You think Americans are mad at Democrats now? Just wait until 2014 when 50 MILLION more Americans have their insurance cancelled (i.e.- after the 1-yr. waiver expires). That's 10x more people than the 5 million who've lost it this year (so far).....

    November 21, 2013 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  14. Daniel

    The longer Obamacare is in place, the more his numbers will continue to tank. This is ironic considering they made healthcare their biggest priority in both terms. Coming to bite you back now?

    November 21, 2013 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  15. The Truth

    Who are those 41%? Unbelievable anyone could find four people who would approve of this disaster of an administration.

    November 21, 2013 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  16. Pol1tical

    Isn't this what the GOP wanted. When he first came on board during the 2008 crisis they wanted him to be one term. Hence all the obstruction. If they really cared anything for the Americans who need healthcare they wouldn't have blocked the Medicaid expansion and allowed the state to open a site for exchanges. That way it wouldn't overburden one fed website. Anyone with common sense would realize this.

    November 21, 2013 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  17. Bob

    And the GOP's Bush was 36 percent so what.

    November 21, 2013 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  18. Lbfent2

    How can there possibly still be 41% of Americans approving the job Obama's doing?...What parts do they like?

    November 21, 2013 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  19. James

    Still better than Bushes and Carter's approval rating at similar stage of presidency.

    Not as good as Clinton. We need another .Com to get there.

    November 21, 2013 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  20. Randy, San Francisco

    Tough to be president when the do Nothing Congress is controlled by irresponsible obstructionist Tea Partiers and conservative extremists.

    November 21, 2013 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  21. jce3227

    I don't have a problem with what they did, it should be a majority rules on everything, always, no matter who has the majority.

    November 21, 2013 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  22. Me


    How could Obama be doing a poor job? Seriously .... Look at where the Dow is today. First time ever it crossed 16,000. Obama is surely doing something right.
    Obama and company or any president for that matter has NOTHING to do with the stock market!!!! Do some research and maybe you won't sound so ignorant!!!

    November 21, 2013 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  23. A True Conservative

    @ The REAL Truth – OK we get are in favor of larger government and more spending. Where does the money come from? Not the 47% who pay NO federal income taxes. What happens when those of us who do foot the bill decide that we will simply stop? I pay huge amounts in federal income taxes – not to mention state and local income taxes – I'm tired of working 10 to 12 hours a day six days a week.....only to see more and more and more of my money taken from me and given to someone else.......

    November 21, 2013 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  24. jce3227

    I don't have a problem with what they did, it should be a majority rules on everything, always, no matter who's in the majority.

    November 21, 2013 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  25. Be nice

    Too bad there's not a recall election.

    November 21, 2013 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
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