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Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Wapo/ABC Poll SHows Americans Souring On Obama And Dem Congress

A couple points before digging into the results of the newest Wapo/ABC poll.

1.) Despite the national average for generic congressional polling showing Republicans ahead of Democrats by 3 percentage points, Rasmussen shows party identification at 32 percent for Republicans and Gallup shows it 41 percent, the Wapo/ABC poll still used 32 percent Democrats to just 26 Republicans, with 39 percent Independents.

2.) The Wapo/ABC polls shows that while all respondents approve of Obama at 51 percent, the national average (averaging the last 7 polls done by multiple organizations) has him at 48 percent.

Wapo/ABC poll:

Republicans have significantly narrowed the gap with Democrats on who is trusted to deal with the country's problems and have sharply reduced several of President Obama's main political advantages, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

The survey paints a portrait of a restless and dissatisfied electorate at the beginning of a critical election year. More than seven in 10 Americans disapprove of the job Congress is doing, and as many say they're inclined to look for new congressional representation as said so in 1994 and 2006, the last times that control of Congress shifted.

Asked how they would vote in the November House elections, Americans split evenly -- 46 percent siding with the Democrats, 46 percent with the Republicans. As recently as four months ago, Democrats held a 51 to 39 percent advantage on this question.

Obama's overall approval rating is holding steady, with 51 percent of respondents giving him positive marks and 46 percent rating him negatively. On the big domestic issues -- the economy, health care, jobs and the federal budget deficit -- bare majorities of Americans disapprove of the job he is doing.

Only on fighting terrorism does Obama receive majority support for his performance, with 56 percent saying they approve. But the poll shows majority opposition to the administration's plan to try terrorism suspects in federal courts.

Note the figures for the Independents on the generic congressional ballot:

The question asking Americans how they plan to vote in House races, known as the generic congressional vote, is an imperfect predictor of elections, but the GOP gains here amplify the extent of the Democrats' slide since they won the House in 2006. Four years ago, Democrats led Republicans on this question by a wide margin.

Among independents who are registered to vote, it's now a 51 to 35 percent GOP lead on this question, a mirror image of the Democrats' advantage among this group of voters on the eve of the 2006 midterms.

On individual issues Obama loses ground on everything but terrorism.

2. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Obama is handling [ITEM]? Do you approve/disapprove strongly or somewhat?

Healthcare- 53 percent disapprove, 43 percent of them strongly disapproving, while 43 percent approve and only 23 percent strongly approving.

The Economy- 53 percent disapprove with 38 percent strongly disapproving and 45 percent approving with 22 percent strongly approving.

The Federal Budget Deficit- 56 percent disapprove with 40 percent strongly disapproving and 40 percent approve with only 17 percent strongly approving.

Creating Jobs- 51 percent disapproving with 35 percent strongly disapproving and 47 percent approving with only 25 percent strongly approving.

Threat of terrorism- 39 percent disapproving with 25 percent strongly disapproving and 56 percent approving with 28 percent strongly approving.

Those numbers do not bode well for Obama and the Democrats going into a crucial election year and having already noted that the sample used by Wapo/ABC favored the Democrats by 6 points, those numbers become even more ominous for Obama and crew.

Speaking of the 2010 elections, the numbers for Congress are even worse according to the Wapo/ABC poll:

3. Do you approve or disapprove of the way the U.S. Congress is doing its job?

71 percent disapprove, 26 percent approve and 3 percent have no opinion.