Gallup: Latest Obama quarterly job-approval rating shows him vulnerable

posted at 11:00 am on April 22, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Gallup had a dose of good news and bad news for President Obama on Friday.  The good news?  His quarterly job approval rose about two and a half points over the previous quarter.  The bad news?  He’s trailing behind Jimmy Carter at the same point in their presidencies:

President Obama’s job approval rating averaged 45.9% during his 13th quarter in office, showing improvement for the second consecutive quarter. His rating is essentially back to where it was before declining last summer and fall. …

The improvement in Obama’s approval rating is likely tied to more positive economic news in recent months, especially concerning unemployment. Obama’s approval rating reached as high as 50% in Gallup Daily tracking, for April 3-5, before settling back down into the mid- to high 40% range in recent days.

That’s bad news in and of itself.  It’s true that the economy had begun to pick up a bit early in the quarter, but that came to an end in March, as job creation cooled and growth indicators turned south.  If Obama’s job approval remains tied to the economy and we have a third straight Stagnant Spring followed by another Wreckovery Summer, even this moderate improvement will dissipate at the worst possible time.

Even if it just plateaus, though, it leaves Obama in a vulnerable position.  In his eighth quarter at the end of 2010, Obama had a nearly identical average approval rating of 46.0%.  The midterms held in that quarter delivered a historic rebuke to Obama and his party, costing them nearly 70 seats in the House and almost losing Senate control as well.

Gallup takes a longer view of history, and that’s not encouraging for Obama, either:

Although Obama’s approval rating is improving, this is offset by the fact that it remains below the averages at the same point in time for presidents who were re-elected. All presidents since Eisenhower who were re-elected enjoyed average approval ratings above 50% during their 13th quarters in office.

The worst rating went to George H. W. Bush at 41.8%, which was a dramatic fall from early 1991 when his job approval ratings were in the 80s.  The only other President on this list below 50% is Jimmy Carter, whose 13th-quarter average was better than Obama’s at 47.7%.  He too ended up running against a challenger that Democrats painted as “radical,” reactionary, and an agent of fat cats rather than the struggling hoi polloi.  Democrats ended up losing that election to Ronald Reagan by nearly 10 points and by 440 electoral votes — and that was with another Republican in the race running as an independent (John Anderson, who got 6.6% of the popular vote but won no electoral votes).

If Gallup’s trend holds, it looks like history might repeat itself.

Addendum: It’s worth pointing out that Gerald Ford isn’t included on Gallup’s list because he never got to a 13th quarter; he took office after Richard Nixon resigned in August 1974.  In looking through the historical trends for Ford’s job-approval ratings in Q1 of his re-election year, it appears as though his average would likely have also been under 50%, a level Ford also reached in the final couple of weeks of March 1976 before dropping back into the mid-40s.  Needless to say, that’s hardly encouraging for Obama, either.


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P O S !

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 11:03 AM

He gets a weekly poll

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 11:03 AM

Quarterly?

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 11:04 AM

Bmore what are you doing?

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 11:04 AM

Carter only won one state in his reelection bid. I fear Barry could lose all 57 ;)

onomo on April 22, 2012 at 11:04 AM

This better not be happening!

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 11:05 AM

This is how history should be repeating itself: http://www.cafepress.com/+history_repeats_itself_womens_dark_tshirt,346416429

Sadly, that’s not where we’re going in our present trajectory.

theotherone on April 22, 2012 at 11:05 AM

How is it that a man who has all the personality of a dead fish, eats dogs and thinks he is a god has any positive approval rating at all?

The Fifth Column Treasonous Media starts to notice that they have fallen from Grace.

SWalker on April 22, 2012 at 11:06 AM

Carter only won one state in his reelection bid. I fear Barry could lose all 57 ;)

onomo on April 22, 2012 at 11:04

…JugEars will win 2 States.

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 11:07 AM

This is how history should be repeating itself: http://www.cafepress.com/+history_repeats_itself_womens_dark_tshirt,346416429

Sadly, that’s not where we’re going in our present trajectory.

theotherone on April 22, 2012 at 11:05 AM

ROTFLMAO… Oh dear will that ever make the liberals heads explode…

SWalker on April 22, 2012 at 11:08 AM

Yeah but he’s so go**am likable!

PBHO 2012 – Because down deep he’s a good guy

Bishop on April 22, 2012 at 11:08 AM

…JugEars will win 2 States.

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 11:07 AM

Kenya and Palestine????

SWalker on April 22, 2012 at 11:08 AM

He’s goin’ down!

thebrokenrattle on April 22, 2012 at 11:09 AM

If Gallup’s trend holds, it looks like history might repeat itself.

That often happens to people who don’t know history. History is mean that way.

Curtiss on April 22, 2012 at 11:11 AM

Carter only won one state in his reelection bid. I fear Barry could lose all 57 ;)

onomo on April 22, 2012 at 11:04 AM

That was Mondale in ’84. Carter got 6 states and (of course) DC.

Count to 10 on April 22, 2012 at 11:11 AM

PBHO 2012 – Because down deep he’s a good guy

Bishop on April 22, 2012 at 11:08 AM

A good guy who eats dogs.

Curtiss on April 22, 2012 at 11:12 AM

The state of the economy will determine Barry’s future.

GarandFan on April 22, 2012 at 11:15 AM

Bmore what are you doing?

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 11:04 AM

Chit-Chatting with Fallon. ; ) You just have to admire what Rameriz has done with 0′s head. Too funny!

Bmore on April 22, 2012 at 11:16 AM

theotherone on April 22, 2012 at 11:05 AM

; )

Bmore on April 22, 2012 at 11:17 AM

You just have to admire what Rameriz has done with 0′s head. Too funny!

Bmore on April 22, 2012 at 11:16 AM

I like the way his ears seem to be attached to his shirt collar.

Curtiss on April 22, 2012 at 11:18 AM

This is going to be one long ugly election race!

CoffeeLover on April 22, 2012 at 11:19 AM

Really hoping he not only loses but loses really big so we dont have all the they stole the election racisim crap from the left. Maybe naive but so sick of the devisivess pitting one group against the other.

ldbgcoleman on April 22, 2012 at 11:22 AM

Really hoping he not only loses but loses really big so we dont have all the they stole the election racisim crap from the left. Maybe naive but so sick of the devisivess pitting one group against the other.

ldbgcoleman on April 22, 2012 at 11:22 AM

Obama could loose all 57 states and those cries will still be heard.

SWalker on April 22, 2012 at 11:24 AM

I like the way his ears seem to be attached to his shirt collar.

Curtiss on April 22, 2012 at 11:18 AM

He just makes 0 look so much like a d……….. that he is. ; )

Bmore on April 22, 2012 at 11:25 AM

Well, living in the “real world” these polls are shit. I have not met a single person in the last year who supports the Obumbler…not one! All that white guilt has been exhausted and while we missed a great opportunity to put a real conservative in the White House. Barry Obumbler’s dismissal will have to suffice,and oh yeah, watching Mechell exiting the building will be an extra bonus! At that moment I will never be more proud of my country!!!

Tbone McGraw on April 22, 2012 at 11:25 AM

As summer approaches and the price of gas tops five bucks a gallon, the cost of groceries drive people to Alpo and even more unemployed join the reduced US workforce, expect the Emperor Zero’s approval to reach 80%.

Just sayin’.

dogsoldier on April 22, 2012 at 11:27 AM

BS did not measured up in reality, what a surprise. But when had Barry, in the last 3 years, while he pretended to be POTUS, can even to be considered close to mediocrity? So is this poll breaking news?

galtani on April 22, 2012 at 11:30 AM

…JugEars will win 2 States.

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 11:07 AM
Kenya and Palestine????

SWalker on April 22, 2012 at 11:08 AM

Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico…
“COUNT IT!!” /s crr6

Khun Joe on April 22, 2012 at 11:34 AM

Democrats ended up losing that election to Ronald Reagan by nearly 10 points and by 440 electoral votes — and that was with another Republican in the race running as an independent (John Anderson, who got 6.6% of the popular vote but won no electoral votes).

You’re telling me… Gary Johnson might not completely screw us over?!?

Mr. Prodigy on April 22, 2012 at 11:46 AM

Carter only won one state in his reelection bid. I fear Barry could lose all 57 ;)

onomo on April 22, 2012 at 11:04 AM

-
lol…
-
Could someone please ask this of the Prez… or at least of Jaybird Carney? Phrase it along the lines of…
-
‘Are you concerned that you could be the first Presidunce to lose in all 57 states?’
-

RalphyBoy on April 22, 2012 at 11:51 AM

Kenya and Palestine????

SWalker on April 22, 2012 at 11:08 AM

….NY and Cali…same mentality.

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 11:56 AM

SWalker on April 22, 2012 at 11:06 AM

Excellent link. Did you write that article? It’s good and it should be distributed far and wide. I’ve bookmarked it.

PatriotGal2257 on April 22, 2012 at 11:57 AM

Because down deep he’s a good guy

Bishop on April 22, 2012 at 11:08 AM

So deep that you would need a bathyscape to find the good part.

Siddhartha Vicious on April 22, 2012 at 11:58 AM

Make me understand why they would vote for him…I can’t think of anything at all…I don’t understand. Help me.

tomas on April 22, 2012 at 12:02 PM

You just have to admire what Rameriz has done with 0′s head. Too funny!

Bmore on April 22, 2012 at 11:16 AM

…he could have used the others grin on JugEars too though!

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 12:02 PM

What about the fact that republicans are waging a war on women and millionaires don’t pay their far share and what Rush said. This should be a landslide victory for our great leader.

newportmike on April 22, 2012 at 12:06 PM

….NY and Cali…same mentality.

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 11:56 AM

California is only half crazy. Oh, and keep your eye on California on election night, the potential for some very impressive fireworks is definitely here. The Dem’s in the State Legislature changed the electoral vote assignment so that the winner of the popular vote gets the electoral college votes. California is split about 50/50 Dems to Rep with a huge number of independents. There is also a pretty significant Mormon population here. As much as the Fifth Column Treasonous Media and the Dem propaganda ministers want you to believe that California is a lock for Obama, it isn’t necessarily so.

SWalker on April 22, 2012 at 12:07 PM

Excellent link. Did you write that article? It’s good and it should be distributed far and wide. I’ve bookmarked it.

PatriotGal2257 on April 22, 2012 at 11:57 AM

Yes, and thank you for your kind words…

SWalker on April 22, 2012 at 12:08 PM

Kenya and Palestine????

SWalker on April 22, 2012 at 11:08 AM

….NY and Cali…same mentality.

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 11:56 AM
Why must you insult Kenya and Palistine?

newportmike on April 22, 2012 at 12:11 PM

The Fifth Column Treasonous Media starts to notice that they have fallen from Grace.

SWalker on April 22, 2012 at 11:06 AM

…and you wonder why some in Congress wanted to grab some control…just a little!…of what is allowed on the Internet…because we know they have the patience for incremental ism.

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 12:15 PM

Has a smooth talking sales person ever sold you something you really didn’t want?

Multiply that by the power of 1,000,000, and you’ve got Obama.

Speakup on April 22, 2012 at 12:16 PM

57 states……(all Dem dream pickups full of those on the federal teat).

District of Columbia

Puerto Rico

Guam

and a few other territories.

all of them get a Dem Senator and at least 1 Dem rep and voila, permanent Democrat Majority.

PappyD61 on April 22, 2012 at 12:18 PM

The Fifth Column Treasonous Media starts to notice that they have fallen from Grace.

SWalker on April 22, 2012 at 11:06 AM

…and you wonder why some in Congress wanted to grab some control…just a little!…of what is allowed on the Internet…because we know they have the patience for incremental ism.

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 12:15 PM

Actually the only thing I wonder is how they haven’t managed to pull that off yet. The internet has literally and figuratively pulled a “Toto” and pulled back the curtain exposing the man behind it making all the big scary noises.

SWalker on April 22, 2012 at 12:19 PM

Why must you insult Kenya and Palistine?

newportmike on April 22, 2012 at 12:11 PM

…I know! I felt guilty…because we have some good people from NY and Cali here on Hot Air…and I am always frightened for them. They are like the Spartans (300)…against the Persians!

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 12:20 PM

They are like the Spartans (300)…against the Persians!

KOOLAID2 on April 22, 2012 at 12:20 PM

Take from them EVERYTHING give them NOTHING…

SWalker on April 22, 2012 at 12:21 PM

A good guy who eats dogs.

Curtiss on April 22, 2012 at 11:12 AM

Has it occurred to anybody else that this gives Barry’s “they talk about me like a dog” line a whole new angle.

ElectricPhase on April 22, 2012 at 12:23 PM

57 states?

Try again…….there could be 60 if they really needed the electoral votes come November. :-)

Palmyra Atoll

Guam (since 1898): also the home of a U.S. Naval Base and a U.S. Air Force Base.

Northern Mariana Islands: formerly a United Nations Trust Territory under the administration of the United States, it established itself as a U.S. Commonwealth in 1978.

Puerto Rico (since 1898): established as a U.S. Commonwealth in 1952.

United States Virgin Islands (since 1917): these were purchased by the U.S. from Denmark.

American Samoa: (since 1898): locally self-governing under a constitution last revised in 1967.[14]

Swains Island: Annexed by the United States on March 4, 1925, currently administered by American Samoa, and claimed by Tokelau (a dependency of New Zealand).

Wake Island: no longer under the jurisdiction of the Department of the Navy, now only inhabited by civilian contractors. It is now primarily a wildlife refuge.

Midway Islands: no longer under the jurisdiction of the Department of the Navy, now inhabited only by caretakers. It is now primarily a wildlife refuge.

Johnston Atoll: last used by the Department of Defense in about 2005.

Baker Island

Howland Island

Jarvis Island

Kingman Reef

Islands in the Caribbean Sea

Bajo Nuevo Bank: uninhabited; also claimed by Colombia, by Nicaragua, and by Jamaica.

Serranilla Bank: currently the site of a Colombian naval garrison; also claimed by Nicaragua, and by Honduras.

Navassa Island: uninhabited; claimed by Haiti.

PappyD61 on April 22, 2012 at 12:24 PM

the job performance of obama has been dismal
just his arrogance in vacations and golfing should be enough to deny him re-election
are we so afraid of being called racist to vote against this man that we would let the USA fall into inflated ashes as a country, sheese people wake up. please.

losarkos on April 22, 2012 at 12:25 PM

All it will take is a few sentences of semi-good economic news and Obama’s ratings will jump right back up there.

The election will come down to:
a) The number of People who voted for Obama last time, but don’t go vote this time.
b) Massive cheating by the Democrats.
c) The number of Soccer moms who say they will vote for Obama, but don’t.
d) Amount of foreign money Obama can bring in.
e) Fearmongering. That will be the Nr. 1 theme of Obama and the left arm of his campaign, the MSM.

albill on April 22, 2012 at 12:26 PM

i thought johnston atoll was our nuclear waste dump?
oh i get it if the dead can vote, yup, never mind.

losarkos on April 22, 2012 at 12:27 PM

Must…Blame…Bush…

Del Dolemonte on April 22, 2012 at 12:29 PM

It took me a while to find it but here is the entire Ramirez cartoon. Enjoy.

Fallon on April 22, 2012 at 12:32 PM

Really hoping he not only loses but loses really big so we don’t have all the they stole the election racism crap from the left. Maybe naive but so sick of the divisiveness pitting one group against the other.

ldbgcoleman on April 22, 2012 at 11:22 AM

If he wins (God forbid), I hope he wins the electoral college but not the popular vote so they’ll finally shut up about 2000. Of course, since several blue states have already passed laws giving their electors to the NPV winner, I don’t see how he could do it.

Odysseus on April 22, 2012 at 12:36 PM

How is it that a man who has all the personality of a dead fish, eats dogs and thinks he is a god has any positive approval rating at all?

The Fifth Column Treasonous Media starts to notice that they have fallen from Grace.

SWalker on April 22, 2012 at 11:06 AM

Well, at least he’s not George Bush. The country was so tired of Bush that they wanted somebody different. And that’s exactly what we’ve got. As those billboards ask: “Miss me yet?”

Gladtobehere on April 22, 2012 at 12:45 PM

Maybe naive but so sick of the divisiveness pitting one group against the other.

ldbgcoleman on April 22, 2012 at 11:22 AM

Divisiveness? Where? Never mind. Just words. /

“I’m not going to demonize you because you disagree with me . . .I don’t think the Democrats have a monopoly on wisdom.”

“I don’t want to pit red America against blue America,” Obama assured an enthusiastic Iowa audience in November 2007. “I want to be the president of the United States of America.”

“Let us resist the temptation to fall back on the same partisanship and pettiness and immaturity that has poisoned our politics for so long.”

VietVet_Dave on April 22, 2012 at 12:53 PM

I keep reading all these professional pundits who get paid to give their political opinions saying things like “a lot can happen between now and November, we don’t know what conditions on the ground will be like a few months from now”.

And yet I’ve yet to hear any of them (including Allah, Ed, & Tina)ponder what, to me, seems like a very plausible scenario……SCOTUS rules Obamacare unconstitutional, the stock market immediately goes through the roof, businesses start hiring, and that leads to a dualing narrative….. Republicans (and anyone else with any common sense) will say that this sudden uptick in the economy proves that Obamacare prevented an economic recovery and Obama wasted 3 and 1/2 years shoving his ideology down our throats while people suffered. Meanwhile, the MSM and the Democrats will say “look at how much better the economy is doing, we told you that it was just a matter of time, now Obama definitely deserves a 2nd term”.

I’m not saying that SCOTUS will definitely rule Obamacare to be unconstitutional (though I think there’s a very good chance they’ll throw out the mandate, which could have a similar effect). I’m just saying that if you want to look into the future over the next several months and try to figure out what might happen, this seems like a logical place to start. So why isn’t anyone bringing it up?

ardenenoch on April 22, 2012 at 1:09 PM

notice that the Gallup graph is going up at a rate of a couple of percent per month.

there is no way this is going to be an easy election. Fraud, the Palace Guard/Attack Dog press, the walking money, the ObamaStash is everyone’s pocket.

Here’s just one of the wealth sharing thins in the pipeline: Barry will be loved by students/parents for keeping the student loan rates low.

Barry and his 1000s of loyalists in the government and associated think tanks can think up ways to give voters money quicker an R says deficit spending.

And barry will say…Romney is evil and wants to take the punch bowl way. And that punch bowl is your God given right…you are OWED.

r keller on April 22, 2012 at 1:12 PM

Without a candidate able to run on his record, 0bama will walk right back into the White House.

DannoJyd on April 22, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Without a candidate able to run against 0bama’s record of FAIL by running on his own record, 0bama will walk right back into the White House.

FIFMe

DannoJyd on April 22, 2012 at 1:39 PM

r keller on April 22, 2012 at 1:12 PM

your analysis hold water if 51% of us are stupid. i dont think “we” are. and we’ll both see whose right in Nov. and just in case your wondering…it me.

t8stlikchkn on April 22, 2012 at 1:42 PM

ardenenoch on April 22, 2012 at 1:09 PM

Even if Obamacare is struck down, why should we get an economic or stock market rally if Obama looks like he’ll be reelected? Your basic premise is flawed.

Gladtobehere on April 22, 2012 at 2:37 PM

Standing Note to future POTUS hopefuls:

The two worst US Presidents, evah, thought they could deal with Iran by being nice.

Both failed, and the effects of their arrogance (Carter: hostages, Obama: economy-killing energy costs) was the reason.

BobMbx on April 22, 2012 at 2:51 PM

He too ended up running against a challenger that Democrats painted as “radical,” reactionary, and an agent of fat cats rather than the struggling hoi polloi.

Stupid should be added to that list of false statements about Reagan.

burt on April 22, 2012 at 2:53 PM

It took me a while to find it but here is the entire Ramirez cartoon. Enjoy.

Fallon on April 22, 2012 at 12:32 PM

All I can figure is even though everyone is entitled to Ramirez’s opinion. Spmeone must of told Ed, not in its entirety. Best link for Ramirez. Click previous to go back through. Click the cartoon to have it open into a bigger version in a new tab.

Bmore on April 22, 2012 at 3:16 PM

That’s just great. Carter Country only lasted one season.

Lanceman on April 22, 2012 at 3:30 PM

Don’t spend ten cents on ANYTHING you don’t need through the end of October. Any increase in retail sales helps re-elect Obama. Delay purchases of clothing, durable goods, automobiles, EVERYTHING.

My wife wants a new stove. We agreed to wait until early November.

Don’t spend your tax refund. Bank it or pay down debt. Sit on all cash.

We can all have the greatest holiday season of our lives if we know Bam-Bam is on his way out.

matthew8787 on April 22, 2012 at 3:36 PM

I love to see the polls showing Obama going down. It’s too bad that my joy from such data is seriously undermined by the knowledge that the alternative is Romney.

besser tot als rot on April 22, 2012 at 4:05 PM

He’s trailing behind Jimmy Carter at the same point in their presidencies:

Good news?: Still in the running for Worst. President. Ever.

IrishEyes on April 22, 2012 at 4:38 PM

That’s just great. Carter Country only lasted one season.

Lanceman on April 22, 2012 at 3:30 PM

Always liked the dude who played the sleazy Mayor Burnside on that show, the late Richard Paul. He actually had nearly completed his credentials to become a clinical psychologist, but chucked that to go into acting. Cancer took him at age 58.

Del Dolemonte on April 22, 2012 at 4:39 PM

Obama is less vulnerable than Jimmy Carter was. Due to chronic mass immigration and the fostering of social divisions by the left, America is far more racialized and divided than it was. There are more people who think like Samuel L. Jackson and will vote for their guy no matter what. Formerly, weak liberal candidates like McGovern and Carter faced the possibility that the entire nation could move to a consensus against them. In the bitterly divided America of the 21st century, too much support is locked in for that to happen. There are enough people who will respond to Obama’s standing appeal to “punish our enemies” to prevent any rout.

And, the demographics for the left grow stronger every year. Unless the Republican party takes courage in hand and ends mass immigration, there will come a time when only politicians like Obama are electable.

David Blue on April 22, 2012 at 6:36 PM

The problem on the Republican side is that Romney is no Reagan.

unclesmrgol on April 22, 2012 at 8:54 PM

ardenenoch on April 22, 2012 at 1:09 PM

You are describing a second order effect. I think Americans are far more apt to view it as a first order effect. In other words, the Democrats have the upper hand in this one.

The Democrats have been doing this for months — pointing to the good numbers out of the stock market as proof the economy is in good shape.

Their story isn’t getting much traction in the trenches, where people are dealing with the reality of the job market and their shrinking paycheck.

If, for any reason, either of the above turn around on his watch, Mr. Obama will get the bennies no matter the reason.

unclesmrgol on April 22, 2012 at 9:05 PM

PBHO 2012 – Because down deep he’s a good guy

…good at destroying and prevaricating

Okay, he has a nice smile. I’ll give him that.

jazzuscounty on April 22, 2012 at 9:29 PM

Don’t spend your tax refund. Bank it or pay down debt. Sit on all cash.

matthew8787 on April 22, 2012 at 3:36 PM

What tax refund? Because of Obama and his legacy legislation, we had to roll ours over into 2012 just so we won’t be so overwhelmed. I know others who have been advised to do the same.

Romney better win, and then he had better do something and do it quickly.

jazzuscounty on April 22, 2012 at 9:36 PM