OBAMA POLL DANCING - AT 8:14 A.M. ET: A new Washington Post/ABC News poll provides still more bad news for the president. The honeymoon is over. The time for marriage counseling has begun:
Public confidence in President Obama's leadership has declined sharply over the summer, amid intensifying opposition to health-care reform that threatens to undercut his attempt to enact major changes to the system, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.
Among all Americans, 49 percent now express confidence that Obama will make the right decisions for the country, down from 60 percent at the 100-day mark in his presidency. Forty-nine percent now say they think he will be able to spearhead significant improvements in the system, down nearly 20 percentage points from before he took office.
The president's overall approval rating stands at 57 percent, 12 points lower than its April peak, as disapproval has ticked up to 40 percent, its highest yet.
COMMENT: This is no longer a rejection of specific policies, which is what we were starting to see months ago. When only 49% believe the president will make "the right decisions for the country," that is a rejection of the president himself.
The approval numbers are still better than those reported in the Rasmussen poll, probably because of the way the Post/ABC News poll was conducted:
The poll was conducted Aug. 13-17 among a random national sample of 1,001 adults on both conventional and cellular telephones. The margin of sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.
Rasmussen polls among likely voters, in our view a more useful sample. It's the voters who count in elections.
August 21, 2009