Barack Obama promised to transform America, and according to a new poll of likely voters by The Hill, that’s one campaign promise that didn’t come with an expiration date. They’d better keep the champagne on ice, though, because a majority of respondents say that Obama has changed the country — for the worse:
Two-thirds of likely voters say President Obama has kept his 2008 campaign promise to change America — but it’s changed for the worse, according to a sizable majority.
A new poll for The Hill found 56 percent of likely voters believe Obama’s first term has transformed the nation in a negative way, compared to 35 percent who believe the country has changed for the better under his leadership.
If you say, “I’ll bet there’s a big partisan divide on this,” you’d be right — but even there, the news isn’t good for Obama:
The feeling that Obama has changed the country for the worse is strongest among Republicans, at 91 percent, compared to 71 percent of Democrats who support Obama’s brand of change.
Strikingly, 1-in-5 Democrats say they feel Obama has changed the United States for the worse.
For those of you keeping score at home, the D/R/I in this sample is 34/35/31, almost identical to the turnout of the 2010 midterms. That’s a pretty solid sample, although it does have slightly more men than women (51/49), when it should be the other way around. In this case, though, it hardly matters, since majorities of women (54/36) and men (59/34) agree that Obama has changed the country for the worse.
In fact, nearly every demo in this poll thinks Obama has made the country change for the worse. That includes 18-39 year olds, at 55/36, a demographic where Obama drew a significant amount of his strength in 2008, as well as low-income voters (<$20K 59/32, $20-40K 51/42), and moderates (barely at 42/40). Independents strongly disapprove of Obama’s tranformative effort, 56/31. It’s easier to pick out the demos that support Obama’s transformation: Democrats, black voters, liberals, and the $60-75K income group.
If the election is a referendum on the incumbent — as re-election efforts almost always are — then Obama’s going to need to keep that champagne on ice permanently.