United States presidential approval rating

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In the United States, presidential job approval ratings were introduced by George Gallup in the late 1930s (probably 1937) to gauge public support for the President of the United States during his term. An approval rating is a percentage determined by a polling which indicates the percentage of respondents to an opinion poll who approve of a particular person or program. Typically, an approval rating is given to a political figure based on responses to a poll in which a sample of people are asked whether they approve or disapprove of that particular political figure. A typical question might ask:

"Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling his job as President?"[1]

Like most surveys that predict public opinion, the approval rating is subjective. Many unscientific approval rating systems exist that skew popular opinion. However, the approval rating is generally accepted as a statistically valid indicator of the comparative changes in the popular US mood regarding a president. The website RealClearPolitics.com keeps track of the current polling averages, which can be seen below.

President Barack Obama[edit]

Most recent polls for President Barack Obama:

Polling Group Date Approval Disapproval +/-
RealClearPolitics.com Average[2] Jan 31 - Feb 12, 2014 42.9% 53.0% –10.7%
Rasmussen Reports[3] February 14, 2014 49% 50% –1%
Gallup[4] February 10-12, 2014 39% 51% –12%
Fox News[5] February 9-11, 2014 42% 53% –11%
The Economist/YouGov[6] February 8-10, 2014 42% 53% –11%
CNN[7] Jan 31 - Feb 2, 2014 45% 50% –5%
NBC/Wall Street Journal[8] March 5-9, 2014 41% 54% –13%
ABC News/Washington Post[9] January 23, 2014 46% 50% –4%
Reuters/Ipsos[10] January 18-22, 2014 40% 54% –14%
CBS News[11] January 17-21, 2014 46% 47% –1%
Quinnipiac University[12] January 8, 2014 41% 53% –12%
Pew Research[13] December 8, 2013 45% 49% –4%

Historical comparison[edit]

President Obama has averaged an approval rating of 48% through his first five-plus years in office, which has dropped his average approval below Richard Nixon (49.1%) and George W. Bush (49.4%). Historical Gallup Poll approval highs and lows for each President since 1937:[14][nb 1]

Order President Highest Approval Lowest Approval High-Low Highest Disapproval Approval Average[14]
44[15] Obama 69 (January 22, 2009) 38 (October 16 2011) 31 55 (August 27/29, 2011) 48.0 [16]
43[17] Bush (G.W.) 90 (September 21, 2001) 25 (October 31, 2008) 65 71 (October 31, 2008) 49.4
42[18] Clinton 73 (December 19, 1998) 37 (May 26, 1993) 36 54 (September 6, 1994) 55.1
41[19] Bush (G.H.W.) 89 (February 28, 1991) 29 (July 31, 1992) 60 60 (July 31, 1992) 60.9
40[20] Reagan 68 (May 16, 1986) 35 (January 28, 1983) 33 56 (January 28, 1983) 52.8
39[21] Carter 75 (March 18, 1977) 28 (June 29, 1979) 47 59 (June 29, 1979) 45.5
38[22] Ford 71 (August 16, 1974) 37 (March 28, 1975) 34 46 (April 18, 1975/November 21, 1975) 47.2
37[23] Nixon 67 (January 26, 1973) 24 (August 2, 1974) 43 66 (August 2, 1974) 49.1
36[24] Johnson 79 (February 28, 1964) 35 (August 7, 1968) 44 52 (August 7, 1968/March 10, 1968) 55.1
35[25] Kennedy 83 (March 8, 1962) 56 (September 12, 1963) 27 30 (September 12, 1963/November 8, 1963) 70.1
34[26] Eisenhower 79 (December 14, 1956) 48 (March 27, 1958) 31 36 (March 27, 1958) 65.0
33[27] Truman 87 (June 1, 1945) 22 (February 9, 1952) 65 67 (January 6, 1952) 45.4
32[28] Roosevelt 84 (January 8, 1942) 48 (August 18, 1939) 36 46 (May 22/29 1938/November 07, 1938)

Graphs[edit]

Gallup Poll graphs of approval ratings for Presidents of the United States:

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Only the results of Gallup polls are included, as no other poll results exist for earlier presidents.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Presidential Approval Ratings – Barack Obama". gallup.com. Retrieved December 1, 2009. 
  2. ^ "President Obama Job Approval Average". Retrieved March 7, 2O13. 
  3. ^ "Daily Presidential Tracking Poll". rasmussenreports.com. Retrieved March 6, 2013. 
  4. ^ "Daily Presidential Tracking Poll". 
  5. ^ National Job Approval Ratings from the Fox News Poll
  6. ^ YouGov Presidential Job Approval
  7. ^ "CNN Poll". CNN. Retrieved February 14, 2014. 
  8. ^ "NBC News/Wall Street Journal Survey". NBC/Wall Street Journal. Retrieved March 11, 2014. 
  9. ^ January 2014 Washington Post-ABC News poll
  10. ^ "Ipsos Poll Conducted for Reuters". Reuters/Ipsos. Retrieved February 14, 2014. 
  11. ^ "Poll: Americans split on Obama approval". CBS News. Retrieved February 14, 2014. 
  12. ^ http://www.quinnipiac.edu/institutes-and-centers/polling-institute/national/release-detail?ReleaseID=1993
  13. ^ http://www.pewresearch.org/data-trend/political-attitudes/presidential-approval/
  14. ^ a b "Presidential Approval Ratings – Gallup Historical Statistics and Trends". Gallup.com. Retrieved August 16, 2011. 
  15. ^ Graphical display and numbers of Gallup "daily tracking" polls
  16. ^ Obama Job Approval, Gallup Presidential Approval Center.
  17. ^ "Gallup.com". Gallup.com. Retrieved August 16, 2011. 
  18. ^ Job Performance Ratings for President Clinton at the Roper Center for Public Opinion Research
  19. ^ Job Performance Ratings for President Bush (G.H.W.) at Roper Center for Public Opinion Research.
  20. ^ Job Performance Ratings for President Reagan at Roper Center for Public Opinion Research.
  21. ^ Job Performance Ratings for President Carter at Roper Center for Public Opinion Research.
  22. ^ Job Performance Ratings for President Ford at Roper Center for Public Opinion Research.
  23. ^ Job Performance Ratings for President Nixon at Roper Center for Public Opinion Research.
  24. ^ Job Performance Ratings for President Johnson at Roper Center for Public Opinion Research.
  25. ^ Job Performance Ratings for President Kennedy at Roper Center for Public Opinion Research.
  26. ^ Job Performance Ratings for President Eisenhower at Roper Center for Public Opinion Research.
  27. ^ Job Performance Ratings for President Truman at Roper Center for Public Opinion Research.
  28. ^ Job Performance Ratings for President Roosevelt at Roper Center for Public Opinion Research.

External links[edit]