A new Gallup Poll shows finds American’s continue to give President Barack Obama low marks on his handling of the economy — as his daily tracking polls tumble:
Three months before the election, President Barack Obama gets good marks from
Americans for his handling of terrorism, fair marks for education and foreign affairs, but poor marks on immigration and three big economic issues: the federal budget deficit, creating jobs, and the economy generally.
These ratings, from a Gallup poll conducted Aug. 9-12, are similar to Americans’ previous ratings of Obama’s performance on each issue, as measured in 2011 and early February 2012. Only his approval on terrorism (58%) is down slightly from the peak level (63%) seen last fall after the killing of Libyan President Moammar Gadhafi. Also, his approval on education, at 49%, is up slightly from 41% last August.
And in historical terms, he is on increasingly thin ice for a President who seeks re-election:
Obama’s ratings on the economy are significantly worse than all three prior successful presidential incumbents at this same point in their first term, according to the available Gallup trends. His 36% approval rating on the economy is well below George W. Bush’s rating in August 2004 (46%), Bill Clinton’s in August 1996 (54%), and Ronald Reagan’s in July 1984 (50%). Still, in terms of comparisons to presidents who lost, Obama’s economic rating is substantially better than that of George H.W. Bush in July 1992 (18%). Gallup did not measure Americans’ approval of Jimmy Carter on the economy in 1980.
Obama’s single worst rating of the seven issues measured in the current poll is for the federal budget deficit. However it is unclear how problematic this will be for him. His 30% approval rating on the deficit falls about halfway between Clinton’s in August 1996 (43%) and Reagan’s in July 1984 (23%).
Gallup initiated the “creating jobs” approval rating in 2009, and thus has no readings on it for previous presidents. However, on the similar item of “unemployment,” Reagan earned a 48% approval rating in 1984, higher than Obama’s 37% for creating jobs.
Meaning: the economy is still potentially THE issue with Americans — a fact not evident in the currrent main subjects of the two parties’ current “debate.”