Opinion: A teeny, tiny majority of Americans approve of Obama’s job handling race, but little else, it seems


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A slight majority of Americans -- 52% -- approve of Barack Obama’s handling of the country’s race relations.

And that’s about it.

On every other issue surveyed in the new Gallup Poll, the Democrat’s job approval rating is under 50% -- in some cases way under.

In fact, on eight of the 13 issues surveyed by Gallup, a majority of Americans disapprove of Obama’s job -- in some cases overwhelmingly.


Like 2-to-1 overwhelmingly.

Other than that, as the Democrats’ hustling Fundraiser-in-Chief approaches his next set of vacations, things are going just fine 12 weeks out from his first midterm election. It’s a big drop from the hopeful 70+% approval the Chicagoan owned on his inauguration day 569 long days ago.

On education (49% - 40% ), terrorism (48% - 45%) and energy (47% - 42%), small pluralities now approve of the president’s job.

However, on all the other issues surveyed, more disapprove: On the environment (think oil spill and offshore drilling moratorium) 51% disapprove while 43% approve. On foreign affairs, once an Obama polling strong....

...suit, it’s 48% no and 44% OK. On taxes his grades are worse: 54% disapprove and 41% approve.

On healthcare, Obama’s professed proudest achievement, the gap grows to 17 points -- 57% disapproving and only 40% approving.

Recently, Obama and Joe ‘Let’s Divide Iraq Into Three Parts’ Biden have been touting the withdrawal of combat troops from Iraq this month, a situation made possible by the previous administration’s 2007 troop surge, which both Democrats strongly opposed. Gallup finds 53% of Americans disapprove of Obama’s job there while only 41% approve despite the presidential pleas.


On the nine-year-war in Afghanistan, where Obama has ordered two troop surges and is now on his third commander in 19 months, the disapproval widens to 21 points -- 57% to 36%.

There’s another 21-point gap on his handling of the economy -- 59% to 38% -- which Americans have told pollsters was their top priority ever since Obama instead began his year-long struggle mainly with congressional Democrats over healthcare.

Thirty-one percent of those polled approve of Obama’s job stimulating the federal deficit to record heights. But 64 trillion percent disapprove.

Finally, Obama gets his worst public grade on the issue of immigration, which he has announced Congress does not have the time nor will to address this year. Not quite three out of ten Americans (29%) approve of his non-work there.

Nearly two-thirds (62%) do not approve of his non-work.

Speaking of Congress, which Democrats have controlled since 2007, a separate Gallup Poll this week finds that 19% approve of its job, while three-out-of-four Americans (75%) disapprove.

And it seems Americans are growing even more dissatisfied with the work of their federal legislators. The congressional approval average so far this year is 20%, down from 30% in 2009.


Americans historically are not too happy with the Capitol Hill crowd of maneuvering suits, regardless of controlling party. For the last 36 years the average approval of Congress has been 36%.

However, this year’s 20% average is the lowest congressional approval level of any midterm election year since 1974, a historic level that presages a substantial turnover of legislative seats for the party controlling the White House.

However, as embattled incumbents are fond of pointing out, the only poll that counts is the one on election day. This year that comes on Nov. 2, just 83 days distant.

-- Andrew Malcolm

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