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Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Perceptions of Obama Weakness

Luke Frans writes at Resurgent Republic:

Following the Supercommitee’s failure to reach an agreement, Washington is captivated with postmortems dissecting what went wrong and assigning blame. Congressional Republicans and Democrats have staked out familiar territory with one side rejecting tax increases and the other sweeping entitlement reforms. Yet President Obama is also vulnerable to criticism of his leadership since he remained on the sidelines during this process.

After the debt ceiling debate, we asked voters the following question in our September survey:

Has President Obama turned out to be a stronger or weaker leader than you thought he would be? Would that be much stronger/weaker, or just somewhat stronger/weaker?

Obama approval rating among voter groups

Voters overwhelmingly viewed President Obama as a weaker leader than expected:

  • 60 percent of voters said President Obama has turned out to be a weaker leader, compared to 32 percent who said stronger.
  • By greater than two-to-one, Independents believed President Obama has been a weaker leader than they expected (65 to 24 percent).
  • Those who said the President has turned out to be a much weaker leader than they thought he would be outnumbered those who believed he turned out to be a much stronger leader by 33 to 13 percent (36 to 7 percent among Independents).
  • 61 percent of voters undecided on the presidential generic ballot believed the President has turned out to be a weaker leader than expected.