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Rasmussen Poll: Obama's Popularity Plunging

By Jim Meyers   |   Tuesday, 30 Jun 2009 07:27 PM

The latest Rasmussen daily tracking poll shows that President Barack Obama for the first time has a negative approval index — more Americans disapprove of his job performance than approve.

In an exclusive Newsmax interview, pollster Scott Rasmussen also disclosed that, if the economy does not improve over the next year, Obama's numbers will deteriorate even further — and Democrats will suffer in 2010.

See Video: Top pollster Scott Rasmussen talks about Obama’s plummeting popularity - Click Here Now

Rasmussen is founder and CEO of Rasmussen Reports and co-founder of the sports network ESPN. He has been an independent public opinion pollster for over a decade, and most major news organizations cite his reports.

Newsmax.TV's Ashley Martella asked Rasmussen for an overview of the latest tracking poll.

"The raw numbers are pretty straightforward — 31 percent of Americans strongly approve of the way Barack Obama is handling his job, 33 percent strongly disapprove," Rasmussen said.

"Before the last week we never had a circumstance where the number who disapprove outweigh the number who approve. So we're in new territory. Right now the approval index, at minus two, is as low as it's been.

"What we've seen in the last month is a growing number of people who strongly disapprove, and we're seeing it at a time when the president's honeymoon is coming to an end and people are beginning to look at the policies that he's promoting."

The closeness of the approve/disapprove numbers are "yet another indicator of how evenly divided our nation is," he added.

On specific issues, Rasmussen disclosed:

"When we talk about healthcare reform and the proposal the president is talking about, the country is fairly evenly divided. But those who have strong opinions tend to oppose the plan more than support it.

"On the cap-and-trade legislation [to reduce carbon emissions], 42 percent believe it's going to hurt the economy. Only 19 percent believe it's going to help.

"The takeover of General Motors is strongly opposed.

"Right now those things are weighing the president down. What's going to tell over the next year is how the economy performs. If a year from today, GM is doing great and throwing off profits and getting the taxpayers their money back, people will say we were wrong, the president was right, and it's great for him. But if GM is back asking for more bailouts, the president's numbers will be substantially weaker than they are today . . .

"If the economy responds negatively over the next year, it is going to hurt the Democrats in 2010.

"What the passage of legislation will actually do is bring ownership of the economy and economic performance more and more into Barack Obama's camp.

"Just over a month ago, 62 percent of Americans said that no matter what's happened in the last six months, George Bush is still more to blame for the economic mess than Barack Obama. That number fell to 54 percent, and the more of Obama's policies that are put in place, the more the blame or perhaps the credit will shift to the current president."

Rasmussen also found:

  • The country is evenly split between those who approve of the way Obama has responded to the disputed elections in Iran and the repression of demonstrations that followed, and those who disapprove and believe he has not been aggressive enough.

  • More Americans strongly oppose Obama's healthcare plan than strongly support it.

  • About 30 percent of Americans favor a single-payer healthcare system, but a majority will oppose it.

    "Americans like the idea of healthcare reform in theory, in the abstract," Rasmussen said.

    "Only 35 percent think this system is in good or excellent shape. But people like the coverage they get by themselves. Among the insured, 70 percent say their own coverage is good or excellent. Among all Americans, only 8 percent say their coverage is poor."

    See Video: Top pollster Scott Rasmussen talks about Obama’s plummeting popularity - Click Here Now

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