U.S. voters say Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney would do a better job handling the economy than President Barack Obama and more Americans than ever think the president is doing a poor job, according to a new poll.
The Quinnipiac University survey found that 46 percent of voters favor Romney’s skills in recharging the economy, while 42 percent opt for Obama. At the same time, 52 percent disapprove of Obama’s job performance, compared with 42 percent who approve. In July, 46 percent in the poll disapproved of Obama’s job performance and 47 percent approved.
Obama plans to give a speech next week detailing plans to spur job growth. Improvement in the economy is the key to turning around views of his presidency, said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute in Hamden, Connecticut.
“The best news for the president is that voters still blame former President George W. Bush rather than Obama for the economy,” Brown said in a statement released by the university. “One can only imagine what Obama’s approval rating might look like if that ever changes.”
Almost half of voters surveyed said the economy is getting worse, compared with 11 percent who see it as getting better. That is a drop from a July Quinnipiac poll in which 32 percent said the economy was worsening and 23 percent saw improvement.
Voters do trust Obama on the issue more than they trust Republicans in Congress or Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann, a Minnesota congresswoman, the poll found. They were split when asked about presidential contender Rick Perry, the Republican governor of Texas.
The Aug. 16-27 poll found that 43 percent of the 2,730 registered voters surveyed favored Obama on the economy, compared with 41 percent who favored Perry. The poll’s margin of error is plus or minus 1.9 percentage points.
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