Rasmussen: Obama approval down to 46%

posted at 12:17 pm on August 31, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

If Barack Obama thought he could ride sympathy over the death of Ted Kennedy to new support for his legislative agenda, the latest Rasmussen polling will throw cold water on that hope.  Overall approval for Obama has now reached 46%, with 53% disapproving.  Strong disapproval now comes within five points of overall approval, almost within the margin of error:

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Monday shows that 30% of the nation’s voters Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as President. Forty-one percent (41%) Strongly Disapprove giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -11…

Overall, 46% of voters say they at least somewhat approve of the President’s performance. That’s the lowest level of total approval yet measured for Obama. Fifty-three percent (53%) now disapprove. Eighty-one percent (81%) of Democrats approve while 83% of Republicans disapprove. As for those not affiliated with either major party, 66% disapprove. See other recent demographic highlights from the tracking polls.

Obama’s overall approval rating has dropped four points in the last two days, which gives an indication that the latest polling is significantly worse than earlier surveys.  Rasmussen uses a rolling three-day poll of 500 likely voters each day.  On Friday and Saturday, his overall approval was at 50%, but has dropped quickly to its new low.

Rasmussen has featured its Presidential Approval Index for the last few months as a measure of the level of passion in support and opposition.  They have a new opportunity to add a metric: the Underwater Index.  Right now, Obama has a +5.  If strong disapproval rises much more, Obama may shortly go negative in that measure as well — and that’s a real possibility as long as the White House pushes ObamaCare on a hostile electorate.

Obama may want to recast the bill as KennedyCare, but this poll seems to indicate that the bill’s label isn’t really the problem.  Kennedy has gone beyond being impacted by this monstrosity, and Obama’s left holding the political bag for it.

Congress will be looking at a much different playing field than when they left for their recess.  At that time, Obama’s job approval ratings were mixed, and even Rasmussen had it as more or less an even split, with only a point or two between overall approval and overall disapproval.  Four weeks later, every pollster has Obama’s numbers heading south quickly, and Rasmussen has Obama seven points under on overall approval/disapproval.  Only the politically suicidal would not take a lesson from this August.  Expect even more resistance to ObamaCare and the public plan in September.


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