Poll Problems: 52% Say Obama Doesn't Deserve Second Term

CNN poll shows sharp decline in Obama's approval rating

By tamer el-ghobashy
|  Friday, Feb 19, 2010  |  Updated 5:41 PM EDT
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Just Your Average Joe-Bama

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Among Americans -- and those registered to vote -- 52% believe Obama does not deserve a second term, while 44% think he does.

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A new CNN poll contains some troubling numbers for President Obama. Among Americans -- and those registered to vote -- 52% believe Obama does not deserve a second term, while 44% think he does. A paltry 4% don't have an opinion on the matter.

In addition, only 49% of those polled approve of Obama's handling of the presidency, compared to 76% last February. Is the president suffering a serious setback or is this the natural ebb and flow of a presidential term?

  • Examiner.com's Bruce Maiman isn't worried. "These polls show that people are angry and they can't decide who they want to blame," he writes. "Ronald Reagan was considered a 'one-termer' at this point in his presidency, too. Polls like this are as accurate and meaningful as the 'If the election were being held today' type polls."
  • Talking Point Memo's Evan McMorris-Santoro thinks it's too early "for the White House to get worried by that result -- Obama still has years to prove to the electorate he can be the president he promised he would be on the trail in 2008." Incumbent Democrats in Congress are the ones who are in danger, he writes.
  • Speaking of incumbents, the Los Angeles Times' Andrew Malcolm, predicts some may not want to be associated with Obama or his agenda. "Say you're a fellow Democrat who is on a ballot this fall and Obama's reps came calling for your support for his legislative agenda and you saw his numbers plummeting like this. How likely would you be to hitch your political wagon to a falling star?"
  • Greg Sargent, writing on The Plum Line, agrees that incumbents are the ones who should be most worried about this type of polling result. "To be clear, this obviously doesn’t have any real bearing on his reelection chances, since 2012 is very far away. But this finding shows just how deep anti-incumbent fervor is running," he writes.
  • The numbers weren't shocking to conservatives on the Red State Blog, but blogger "haystack" wasn't gloating. "The temptation to mock, while great, will be resisted," he wrote, recalling on the dark days before George W. Bush's re-election when polls showed a severe dissatisfaction with his performance. "I think (and I’m prepared to be corrected on this) that there is a fundamental difference between the two however; Bush gave in a little without having to abandon his agenda while Obama appears ready to give up all he stood for a year ago just to cling to his political life - agenda be damned."

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