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Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Polls: Good for GOP Field, Less Good for POTUS

Previous polls showed unhappiness with the GOP field. But things have apparently changed, as AP reports:
Republicans party elders are still grousing about the GOP choices for president ... But an Associated Press-GfK poll released Friday found that Republicans and Republican-leaning independents are coming around to the choices already on the table: About two-thirds are pleased with the party's presidential field, compared with just half in June. And they're paying more attention, with 52 percent expressing a "great deal" of interest in the GOP nomination fight — compared with 39 percent earlier this summer — after a period that saw Perry enter the race and Michele Bachmann win a test vote in Iowa, the lead-off caucus state, threatening Mitt Romney's standing at the top of the pack.
Gerald Seib writes at The Wall Street Journal that the president's state-level approval ratings differ from his national numbers:

Gallup recently tried to address that by aggregating roughly 90,000 interviews it conducted in the first six months of the year, and assembling the Obama job approval readings into a state-by-state breakdown. Now Bill McInturff, head of Public Opinion Strategies and co-director, along with DemocratPeter Hart, of The Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll, has gone one better. Mr. McInturff has taken those state-by-state findings and overlaid them on the electoral map.

He finds a set of “blue” states with 215 electoral college votes where Mr. Obama’s aggregate approval rating is above 50%; another set of “purple” states, with 161 electoral votes, where his approval rating ranges from 44% to 49%; and a bloc of “red” states, with 162 electoral votes, where his approval rating is below 43%. (Winning the presidency requires 270 of the 538 electoral college votes.)

As that suggests Mr. Obama has some work to do to get to those 270 electoral votes, particularly in states he turned to the Democrats’ favor in 2008. In Virginia, for instance, his aggregate approval rating is 46%, and in Colorado it’s 44%. On the other hand, and surprisingly, his aggregate approval rating is a healthy 48% in normally red Georgia.


For a look at the graphics with Mr. McInturff’s findings, click here.

Support for U.S. military action in Libya has skyrocketed nearly 20 points in the wake of this week's events in Tripoli, but most Americans don't see the rebel advances in Libya as a victory for the United States, according to a new national survey.

And a CNN/ORC International Poll released Friday also indicates that while President Barack Obama's approval rating on Libya has grown, his overall job rating has not budged.

According to the poll, 54 percent of all Americans now favor U.S. military action in Libya, up from 35 percent in July. And a 52 percent majority now approve of how Obama has handled the situation in Libya, up seven points since May.

But only a third say that removing Moammar Gadhafi from power is a major achievement for the U.S. and only a third say that the events of the past week represent a victory for the U.S.

Did the president get a bounce from Libya?

Apparently not. Libya has not changed the president's overall approval rating. Obama still gets low marks on the economy, and previous polling suggests that the number who think the economy is the number one issue is 12 times higher than the number who were principally concerned about Libya. As a result, Obama's overall approval rating now stands at 45 percent, with 54 percent saying they disapprove of the job he's doing in office, virtually unchanged since mid-July.