President's marks as manager take hit in new CNN/ORC poll
November 25th, 2013
06:00 AM ET
9 years ago

President's marks as manager take hit in new CNN/ORC poll

Washington (CNN) - Only four out of 10 Americans believe President Barack Obama can manage the federal government effectively, according to a new national poll.

And a CNN/ORC International survey released Monday morning also indicates that 53% of Americans now believe that Obama is not honest and trustworthy, the first time that a clear majority in CNN polling has felt that way.

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According to the survey, conducted last Monday through Wednesday, 40% say the President can manage the government effectively. That 40% figure is down 12 percentage points from June and is the worst score Obama received among the nine personal characteristics tested in the new poll.

"A lot of attention has focused on the President's numbers on honesty in new polling the past three weeks, but it looks like the recent controversy over Obamacare has had a bigger impact on his status as an effective manager of the government, and that may be what is really driving the drop in Obama's approval rating this fall," CNN Polling Director Keating Holland said.

Does being an effective manager count more than honesty?

"Just ask Bill Clinton, whose overall approval ratings remained high during and after the Monica Lewinsky scandal because three-quarters of all Americans thought he could get things done, even though only about one in five said he was honest," Holland added.

Obama's woes are not limited to honesty and his managerial skills. Fifty-six percent say he is not a person they admire, and an equal number say he does not agree with them on important issues. Fifty-six percent also say he does not inspire confidence, and 53% don't view him as a strong and decisive leader. All of those figures are all-time records for Obama in CNN polling.

There is a silver lining in the poll for the President: He's still seen as someone who cares about ordinary Americans, six in 10 say he has a vision for the country's future, and seven in 10 say he is likable–his best attribute of the nine items tested in this poll. But the numbers are down for both admiration and likeability.

"It's clear that views of Obama as a person - once his strong suit - have taken a hit in October and throughout 2013," said Holland.

The poll was conducted November 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.

- CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

Filed under: Polls • President Obama
soundoff (676 Responses)
  1. vbscript2

    "Polls are great and all, but look at how many they spoke to. 843 in a span of two days. Is that number even significant against the country's population?"

    Yes. It's called statistics. The probability of getting significantly-skewed results among a random sample with a sample size of 843 is very small.

    November 25, 2013 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  2. RandyNewnan23

    "40% say the President can manage the government effectively"
    CNN is drawing wild conclusions from this poll. It has nothing to do with Obama, but instead reflects the GOP do nothing attitude in obstructing everything they can.

    November 25, 2013 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  3. Tony

    I don't think a lot of people know how our government operates. Many of the things I hear Obama blamed for are things that he can't do single-handedly. He needs the cooperation of Congress and, given the climate he's had to deal with, isn't getting that anytime soon.

    We've gotten to the point where there is so much hatred of Obama that people no longer look at whether it's a good bill, they vote against it just because Obama supports it. Republicans even vote against there own bills if they find out Obama supports it, just to spite the man.

    November 25, 2013 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  4. RomneyWho

    Who in their right minds would put their trust in mere men? That said, what does this poll say about the rest of these politicians, who can you really trust? I rest my case. 🙁

    November 25, 2013 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  5. max cady

    As compared to the 91% who believe congress cannot be trusted, to run the government.

    November 25, 2013 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  6. ora pike

    this is why clinton said he thought obama was a joke-that obama had never owned a business, run a business, and now runs the biggest business in the world. He just took another company that he loaned 500 million to and sold it to china company for 25 million-–what a wonderful president we have. He lies YOU CAN KEEP YOUR INSURANCE POLICY or IT WAS THE VIDEO or NOBODY TOLD ME ABOUT THAT. Romney told him to let the car companies go bankrupt and then help them out--he didn't and it costs us an extra 200 million. Now free cell phones which i don't understand, obamacare which will be our biggest tax ever, food stamps being sold online, criminals enrolling people in obamacare, on and on so why would we think this idiot can't run a company.

    November 25, 2013 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  7. Vince

    @JoeCT"We work just as hard or harder, value life, have faith and can't stand freeloaders or people who scam the system."

    Which is why all liberal policies seem to keep people hooked on entitlements huh?

    At least our allies didnt shake thei heads in disgust like they do with this president.

    November 25, 2013 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  8. itsy_bitsy

    Obama has a large lying mouth! That and golf are the ONLY things he does well!

    November 25, 2013 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  9. Vince

    "polls who cares the gop still has nothing to offer but hate"

    Blah blah blah!

    This is getting old.

    November 25, 2013 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  10. vinster76

    4 out of 10? I cant believe it's that high.....They must have conducted the poll in the People's Republic of Massachusetts, or in Chicago's Southside.......

    November 25, 2013 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  11. AG

    I see the Obama haters and GOPers are ecstatic about this article, but so willingly ignore the approval rating of the Republican Party. At least this president TRIES to help this country. All Congress has done for the past five years in regards to anything to help get this country back on track is say NO. The GOP is destructionist to this country.

    November 25, 2013 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  12. john

    Obama,now shows why he has been classified as a " back-bencher" here in Illinois where as a one- time senator he was useless and was well known as a radical among the Chicago crowd of elites.

    November 25, 2013 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  13. VJ

    Who can we trust either Obama nor do nothing republicans??? I would say Obama... wait and see in next year tide will change...Obama will re-gain his trust and his popularity...

    November 25, 2013 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  14. NudeTruth

    Liberals = Hate in the guise of Love the vilest of people.

    It's about time more Americans started to wake up and see the BS Obama's been feeding them.

    November 25, 2013 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  15. The Worm, Jr.

    You know, this is a shame. The President won an historic election in 2008 and was given the opportunity to be one of the most historic Presidents ever and really make a mark for himself. However, at this point it looks like what he will be most remembered for, at least in my mind, is lying to the people that gave him the opportunity and a really poor implementation of the signature accomplishment of his administration.

    November 25, 2013 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  16. Malory Archer


    Who pays for all his flying around? I saw the special on TV regarding Air Force One and that it cost about $1 million each time he goes on a trip with it (two planes, all the logistics, security, etc.).


    Yet your ilk doesn't utter a peep about the rethugs' taxpayer funded "We hate 'Obamacare'" tour currently making its way across the country, breathlessly documenting every story from the .06% of Americans who are "losing" their junk medical coverage – and making up a few stories of their own along the way, while totally ignoring the positive stories which far outnumber the "negatives". Hypocritical much?

    BTW, wasn’t your ilk bashing President Obama just last week for not attending events at Gettysburg? Face it, in your hate-filled little existence he’s danged if he does/danged if he doesn't.

    November 25, 2013 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  17. Scott

    Who wants Obamacare? The uninsured and the sick.
    Who doesn't want Obamacare? The insured and the healthy.
    Who wants Obama?..........................................................

    November 25, 2013 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  18. Anonymous

    Duh! It makes you wonder about the other 47%. Clearly far too naive to be given the right vote. The man is a compulsive liar. You can't believe a single word that comes out of his mouth.

    November 25, 2013 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  19. tullymd

    I had previously identified him as a "flim flam man" saying one thing doing another. I think of health public option, and finance reform...feckless and without prosecution and imprisoning of Wall Street banksters

    November 25, 2013 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  20. Mblasi

    Compare him to Bush, say how bad Romney would be, bla bla bla...This guy is a Chicago politician and straight up lies to us. Didn't know the website would not be ready, suuure. Did not know people would get cancelled, uh-huh. Wonder why business is parking cash on the side lines? Smart people have known they can't trust this cat for a while and are defensive. We have a community organizer for president, not a military man or business man. What has he ever done or created of value?

    November 25, 2013 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  21. Lucy

    I don't believe a word that comes out of Obama's mouth. I've caught him in a lie way too many times – from "I'm a Christian" to "You can keep your health plan." And now, now he throws Israel under the bus while pretending to be their friend. It's just disgusting that ANYONE believes him anymore.

    November 25, 2013 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  22. ghostwriter

    Liberals......stop trying to dismiss the poll. That is such a conservative thing to do. It is what it is.

    Conservatives...jumping for joy at the president's low poll numbers is quite funny, considering the republicans in office have numbers in the teens, if that.

    November 25, 2013 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  23. ss

    they dont trust him because he lied. and then he actually had the nerve to get up there and think people wouldnt notice he changed his answer, even though its all over the airways.

    November 25, 2013 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |

    wow we the people are really lost lets set aside Bush fo about 5 yrs get over it we the people had the power to remove Bush from office instead left and right bicker fight while ur puppet master watchs u dance for them just LIKE BUSH Obama needs to b removed hell it all needs to torn down and rebuilt like the forefathers b4 us did remember that word UNITED its in our name lets not forget that and UNITE for us the people.

    November 25, 2013 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  25. deek5

    I wish people would stop calling the GOP obstructionists. They are doing what they were hired for. To stop Obama from completely ruining this country. You want one person in charge of everything? Move to Iran, Russia, China, Cuba......etc. Not part of this story but the deal he had made with Iran is just wrong. Is he naive enough to think that they'll change their minds about Israel and terrorism? Iran is just buying time like North Korea.

    November 25, 2013 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
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