"Our current data brings into question the notion that you can run against Bush and win," said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. "Obviously Bush is not popular. The question is: Does it help Obama to run against the past in debating the future?"
A Quinnipiac survey last week found that Obama's "political honeymoon ended," and put his job approval rating at a new low of 44%. When voters were asked whether he was a better president than Bush, 42% said yes, and 32% said no. The gap was narrower among voters who identify themselves as independents, a potentially troublesome finding for Democrats.
Two years removed from an electoral wave created by President Barack Obama that swept Democrats into wide Congressional majorities, the chief executive's numbers have faltered badly in a number of contested states -- raising concerns that he could be a drag on Democratic candidates this fall.
A new independent poll in Missouri paints a grim picture for the president. Obama's job approval rating stood at just 34 percent with the overall electorate; among independents the numbers were even worse with just 27 percent approving of the job Obama is doing and 63 percent disapproving.
Go deeper into the poll and the numbers don't get any better. With the economy shaping up to be the dominant issue in the campaign across the country this fall, just one in three Missouri voters approved of Obama's handling of it; among independents a whopping 68 percent disapprove of how the president had handled the economy.