Mar. 16, 2009

Obama’s Approval Rating Slips Amid Division Over Economic Proposals

President Barack Obama’s approval rating has slipped, as a growing number of Americans see him listening more to his party’s liberals than to its moderates and many voice opposition to some of his key economic proposals. Obama’s job approval rating has slipped from 64% in February to 59% currently, while disapproval has jumped from […]

Mar. 16, 2009

Section 1: Obama and the Economy

Nearly six-in-ten Americans (59%) approve of the way Barack Obama is handling his job as president. About a month ago, 64% approved of his job performance. Obama’s disapproval ratings have grown significantly over this time; in early February, just 17% said they disapproved of the president’s handling of his job; today, 26% do so. The […]

Mar. 16, 2009

Section 2: The Policy Agenda

A month after President Obama signed the economic stimulus bill, most Americans (56%) express a positive view of the nearly $800 billion package. Slightly more than a third (35%) says the legislation is a bad idea. In early February, the Pew Research Center asked a similar question only of those who said they had heard […]

Feb. 18, 2009

Obama Faces Familiar Divisions Over Anti-Terror Policies

President Obama receives positive ratings for his handling of terrorism and most Americans say his administration’s policies will reduce the likelihood of another major attack on the United States. But as in recent years, the public remains deeply divided over how best to defend the nation against the threat of terrorism. Americans approve of […]

Feb. 9, 2009

Support for Stimulus Plan Slips, But Obama Rides High

After weeks of intense debate over President Obama’s economic stimulus plan, a narrow majority of Americans (51%) who have heard about the $800 billion plan say it is a good idea, while 34% say it is a bad idea. In January, the balance of opinion regarding the plan was more positive: 57% of those […]

Jan. 21, 2009

Who Expects To Gain — And Lose — Under Obama

Jan. 15, 2009

Section 1: Obama and His Administration

Public opinion about President-elect Obama’s transition continues to be very positive. Seven-in-ten approve of the job Obama has done so far in explaining his policies and plans for the future, while just 18% disapprove. These numbers have changed little since December (72% approve) and are significantly higher than opinions about George W. Bush (50%) and […]

Jan. 15, 2009

Section 2: A New Era in the Capital

Public’s Forecast: Reduced Partisanship As Barack Obama prepares to take office, half of the public (50%) thinks that Republicans and Democrats in Washington will work together more to solve problems in the coming year, while 39% say they will bicker and oppose each other more than usual. The public is more optimistic on this measure […]

Jan. 15, 2009

Section 4: Favorability of Political Figures and Parties

Barack Obama’s favorability rating is much higher than those of his predecessors just before they were sworn in. While both Bill Clinton and George W. Bush enjoyed robust favorability ratings on the eve of their inaugurations, neither of their measures matches Obama’s current mark. Nearly eight-in-ten Americans (79%) view the president-elect favorably; that compares with […]

Jan. 15, 2009

Strong Confidence in Obama – Country Seen As Less Politically Divided

Public confidence in Barack Obama to deal with the nation’s most pressing problems is quite high, with about seven-in-ten saying they have at least a fair amount of confidence that he will do the right thing when it comes to mending the economy, preventing terrorism, and in dealing with Iraq. Notably, many Americans not […]

Dec. 11, 2008

Section 4: Obama’s Transition

Public reaction to President-elect Obama’s transition thus far has been very positive. Large majorities approve of his choices for cabinet positions and other high level offices (71%) and the job he has done in explaining his policies and plans for the future (72% approve). More than six-in-ten (63%) say it is a good thing that […]

Nov. 14, 2008

High Hopes

Nov. 13, 2008

Post-Election Perspectives

Nov. 13, 2008

Section 2: The President-Elect’s Image and Expectations

High Expectations for Obama’s First Term Two-thirds of voters (67%) expect Obama to have a successful first term, while only 22% think the new president will be unsuccessful. Nearly all Democrats (90%) are optimistic about Obama’s first term, as are 67% of independent voters. Republicans are nearly evenly divided; 41% believe Obama’s first term will […]

Nov. 13, 2008

Section 3: A New Political Landscape

As Democrats look forward to a president from their party and expanded majorities in Congress, they are optimistic about the coming years. Most foresee a decrease in partisanship in Washington and say that their party’s leaders should try to work with Republican leaders to get things done, even if it means disappointing some groups of […]

Nov. 13, 2008

High Marks for the Campaign, a High Bar for Obama

A week after the election, voters are feeling good about themselves, the presidential campaign and Barack Obama. Looking ahead, they have high expectations for the Obama administration, with two-thirds predicting that he will have a successful first term. The quadrennial post-election survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press finds […]

Nov. 5, 2008

Inside Obama’s Sweeping Victory

Oct. 21, 2008

Section 2: Candidate Traits

The favorability ratings for both candidates on the GOP ticket have declined over the past month. By contrast, both Barack Obama and Joe Biden are now viewed more favorably than they were in mid-September. Currently, 54% of voters say they have a favorable opinion of McCain, while 42% have an unfavorable opinion. In mid-September (Sept. […]

Oct. 21, 2008

Growing Doubts About McCain’s Judgment, Age and Campaign Conduct

Barack Obama’s lead over John McCain has steadily increased since mid-September, when the race was essentially even. Shortly after the first presidential debate on Sept. 26, Obama moved to a 49% to 42% lead; that margin inched up to 50% to 40% in a poll taken just after the second debate. Currently, Obama enjoys […]

Sep. 18, 2008

Section 2: Candidate Traits

Both McCain and Obama continue to be well regarded by voters on a number of personal traits. As was the case in April, majorities view both candidates as patriotic, honest and down-to-earth. However, there are major differences in how voters view each candidate. Far more regard McCain as patriotic (91%) than say this about Obama […]