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Media Pretend That Latest Polls Show Obama's Policies Are Unpopular

The evidence says otherwise.
 
 
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Today, two new national polls were released, one by the New York Times and CBS, the other by the Wall Street Journal and NBC. News headlines quickly settled on a theme: The polls showed that President Obama’s policies were suddenly unpopular:

Sticker Shock — Obama still popular; his policies, not so much” [ABC's The Note]

Polls find rising concern with Obama on key issues” [ Reuters]

Polls Show Declining Support For Obama Decisions” [U.S. News & World Report's Political Bulletin]

Obama’s popularity: Problems testing it” [Chicago Tribune's The Swamp]

Is ‘Smooth Sailing’ Over for Obama?” [ Washington Post]

The headlines have little to no relation to the actual data in the polls, both of which found broad approval for Obama’s foreign policy and economic agendas. From the New York Times/CBS poll:

5. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling the economy? 57% approve, 35% disapprove

8. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling the threat of terrorism? 57% approve, 27% disapprove

16. So far, do you think Barack Obama’s policies have made the economy better, made the economy worse or haven’t his policies had any effect on the economy yet? 32% say better, 15% say worse

And from the Wall Street Journal/NBC poll:

4b. Do you generally approve or disapprove of the job that Barack Obama is doing in handling the economy? 51% approve, 38% disapprove

4c. Do you generally approve or disapprove of the job that Barack Obama is doing in handling foreign policy? 54% approve , 36% disapprove

9. Which ONE of the following statements best describes your feelings toward Barack Obama?

Like personally and approve most policies…………… 48%
Like personally but disapprove of many policies ……27%

12. And how confident are you that Barack Obama has the right set of goals and policies to improve the economy––extremely confident, quite confident, only somewhat confident, or not at all confident?

Extremely confident………………………. 20%
Quite confident …………………………. 26%
Only somewhat confident ………………….. 24%
Not at all confident …………………….. 29%

 

Ali Frick is a Research Associate for The Progress Report and ThinkProgress.org at the Center for American Progress Action Fund.

 
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