In the wake of rising gas prices, contentious conflicts in Iran and Afghanistan and continued high unemployment rates, President Barack Obama‘s popularity is on a swift decline, reports the latest New York Times/CBS News poll.
Experiencing a patriotic, relieved bump in support after the Navy SEAL assassination of Osama bin Laden, the president’s approval rating has dipped to 41 percent– with 47 percent saying they disapprove of the Obama Administration.
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Even with the circus that is the Republican primary, Obama finds himself in a statistical show-down with Mitt Romney, predicted by the poll to win by a slight 3 percent (47 percent to 44 percent) in the general election in November.
Obama manages to maintain his support among women and Americans are still confident that the economy is improving; still, even with that good news, 75 percent of Americans view the nation’s financial state as “fairly bad” or “nearly bad,” according to the poll. His typically high approval ratings among independents, moderates, college graduates and younger voters is also falling.
Sharp as the drop in Mr. Obama’s approval rating was in the Times/CBS News poll, it was not in isolation. The latest ABC News/Washington Post poll, released on Monday, also reported a drop in Mr. Obama’s overall approval rating, to 46 percent from 50 percent last month. The latest tracking poll from Gallup, also released Monday, showed Mr. Obama with an approval rating of 49 percent.
Yet, polls capture only a particular moment in time, and can be influenced by the way questions are asked or the mix of people who are surveyed. In The Times/CBS News poll, the margin of sampling error could mean the president’s approval rating is as high as 44 percent or as low as 38 percent, at a 95 percent confidence level. The telephone poll was conducted March 7 to 11 with 1,009 adults nationwide.
With all the accomplishments touted by the White House, it all seems to come down to gas prices. According to polls, “54 percent of poll respondents believed that a president can do a lot to control gas prices, as opposed to 36 percent who believe they are beyond a president’s control.”
Take note, Mr. President. November is right around the corner.