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Lowest ever: Obama job approval sinks to 39%, as even Democrats' support melts away


Another Sinking Ship

President Obama has passed the Big 4-0 -- going the wrong way.

Turns out voters were not simply satisfied to spank the Democrat and his party in the Nov. 2 midterm elections with historic losses in the House of Representatives.

Obama's job approval rating as calculated by the Zogby Poll has now sunk to 39%, a new low for his 22-month presidency that began with so much hope and excitement and poll numbers up around 70. As recently as Sept. 20, his job approval was 49%.

A whopping 60% now disapprove of his job, up from 51% disapproval Sept. 20.

Obama now trails in hypothetical 2012 matchups against Republicans Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich and the next Bush, Jeb.

And, oh, my! Lookee here! Obama has even fallen into a statistical tie with none other than Sarah Palin, the former Alaska governor.

How embarrassing that is because other polls have shown a majority of Americans believe she is unqualified for the presidency. So it appears many have now decided, on second thought after a nearly two-year test drive, Obama looks that way too.Democrat president Barack Obama enjoys a good laugh before the 2010 midterm elections

Obama began losing the support of independents in the summer of 2009, as he responded to polls showing voter concerns focused on the economy by staging 59 town hall meetings on healthcare. Independents were a crucial part of his coalition win in 2008 but have now dwindled to 39%.

Only 6% of Republicans, not surprisingly, approve of Obama's job performance. But younger voters, also crucial in the ex-state senator's convincing defeat of John McCain, now approve by only 42%.

Nearly 7 in 10 likely voters say the country is on the wrong track, rarely a good sign for incumbents.

But, Zogby notes, perhaps most ominous for the president is that he's now losing support among his own party people. His approval plopped nearly 10% in just one week, from 78% down to 72% in Zogby's latest read.

Obama, John Zogby writes, "is failing to please more than one-fourth of his own party’s voters. This is a perilous position for the President.

"Conventional wisdom calls for him to reach for the center and assume that Democrats will stay with him in 2012. But as we saw in the mid-terms, Democrats can't win without strong turnout from the young and minorities, both of which are demographics that need more motivation than others to vote."

Former governor Romney fares the best against Obama (44-38%), then comes Gingrich (43%-39%), then another former governor, Jeb Bush (40%-38%), who says he is not running. Palin ties (40%-41%). Obama does, however, destroy developer Donald Trump (39%-29%) and New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg (32%-13%). (A separate Quinnipiac Poll Monday found Obama in dead heats with either Romney or former Gov. Mike Huckabee.)

-- Andrew Malcolm

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Photos: Chile Navy via Associated Press; Larry Downing / Reuters.

Comments () | Archives (344)

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This president is the worst president to ever hold the office of President of the United States.

It was quite evident at the very beginning that he was not qualified to try to run this country. He has shown that he is imcompetent, inept and to be quite frank, quite lacking in common sense. Just what a community organizer is all about. Not willing to make a living but to use other people's money to do what?How did he do as a community organizer? Does anybody know? I'll bet he sucked at that too. The mark of a good executive is to hire the best people to take care of the side of the business that you are most weak in. He can't even do that because he is so beholden to the jerks that helped him get elected. The UNIONS!!!

Rating is that high? There used to be only a 30% level of true reprobates in America. The school system must be getter better. sic

No surprise. It was inevitable. Once the people discovered the lawyer/leaflet tosser/college professor/company infiltrator in charge, they were bound to run screaming for help.

This man who couldn't run a 7-11 properly, elected by the independents, thank you very much, has been given every inch of rope he's needed and now, the hanging begins. I'm sure somebody will claim that as a racist remark. It's not. It's an old adage: given enough rope...

But what does this say about our citizens? How could we have elected such a man as this? Without experience. Without knowledge. Without a real plan. How could we have overlooked his vast differences from what an American President usually looks like? His past connections to terrorists. His past connections and mentors of racists, anti-Americans, socialists, anti-colonialists? How could we overlook his thinly veiled transformative implications?

What have we learned? Have we learned? Have we learned that a well-oiled machine is not necessarily a Cadillac? Have we learned that America does not need to be transformed except back to its original premise, morality, ideals?

Have we learned the dangers of the liberal agenda yet? or are we still confused?

Have we learned what destruction Political Correctness can wreak? Have we learned how to treat our friends, and our enemies?

I wonder.

39%? Incredible! I mean, how can nearly 2 in 5 Americans still have confidence in this guy?

Clue up are inept and nobody likes your idealogy. Change your stupid ways and you may save some face.

This has to be caused by Reid and Pelosi pulling him down, now that the repubs are in control of the house he will be able to move right towards the center. If it wasn't for them pull him so far left by pushing health care and the huge stimulus, he would have govern from the center. This is the reason the White House kept saying it was messaging, because they didn't know how to put a good spin on congress far let push.

Do I hear strains of "Nearer my God to Thee" from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue??

How can 39% of the population still support this incompetent? I could believe 10%, maybe.

Mr. One term!!! Thanks Obama for destroying the democratic party! :)

We cannot remove that Marxist from the White house soon enough. An let us disinfect it as soon as the Obonos are out and on their way back to the cesspool, Chicago ... that they came from .

These polls mean nothing at the moment. When the other candidates have to actually present what they would do and engage in real live debates I expect the numbers will start to move in a more positive direction for Obama. Or not. I do think it's a huge mistake to not take Palin seriously. I'm no fan, but I recognize that she's got the power.

Remember how cocky Obama was when he had that visit with Bush at the WH! Maybe his dual teleprompters can teach him to smile now that he is not ubiversally loved.

Why has it taken this long for America to come to grips with the truth about Obama, i.e., he's unfit for the office he holds.

If it is possible for him to reach zero percent, I think he's got a shot at it.

On a serious note and a political one, it hits 30%, impeachment is not out of the question. Impeachment is a political tool, not a legal one - for those that don't know check your Federalist Papers- so I hope it is used. He can not govern, lead or direct National Security if this nation does not trust in him. Keep falling Mr. yourself a favor, fade away.

I don't believe it. It's a pro-Republican pollster and is out of step with all the other polls on this subject.

On a serious note and a political one, it hits 30%, impeachment is not out of the question. Impeachment is a political tool, not a legal one - for those that don't know check your Federalist Papers- so I hope it is used. He can not govern, lead or direct National Security if this nation does not trust in him. Keep falling Mr. yourself a favor, fade away.

i never voted for him the first time and rate him the same now as before at 0 % approval.

still have seen no proof that he is even an american citizen as he refuses to show a long form version authentic hawaii birth certificate or passport showing he legally returned to the usa from indonesia where his mother had to renounce his assumed american citizenship in order to live there for 4 years.

he wants to see all our papers and documents yet has personally paid lawyers well over a million to keep his documents hidden.

Hussein Obama = Half-breed numbnuts !

So why do polls showing him running for president in 2012 always say he would win? Doesn't make sense to me. I think his approval rating will be under 25% by the next election.

39%. Wow, it's that high!

This has to be caused by Reid and Pelosi pulling him down, now that the repubs are in control of the house he will be able to move right towards the center. If it wasn't for them pull him so far left by pushing health care and the huge stimulus, he would have govern from the center. This is the reason the White House kept saying it was messaging, because they didn't know how to put a good spin on congress far let push.

Hey! What about Ron Paul!

To be honest, I've been amazed that such a horrible president stayed around 45% for so long. The American people richly deserve this guy. Every single warning sign was ignored in 2008 as millions literally worshiped someone they knew nothing about. He totally scammed the American people!

You know what this means don't you? That there are still 39% fool-aid drinking, brain dead idiots out there!

I thought I would never see a piece like this published in the LA Times, and yet there are no comments at all? Where is the outrage? Where is the righteous indignation? Where is Tim Robbins, for that matter?

This guy was a clueless, undereducated moron from the word go; he's the knee-jerk liberal dream.

But he went to Harvard law, you say? Let's see the transcripts to see if he actually learned something other than how to hit up businesses for cash or get himself elected to office.

My strong suspicion is that the man is the ultimate product of our education system as it now stands. He knows what be ought to believe, but he has no factual basis for why he believes it.

Wow, looks like the media are finally seeing Obama for what some have said all along...he isn't qualified. Put it another way...would you hiring a community organizer for a CEO position of a successfull company? Doubtful. His greatest liability is that he refuses to listen to voters. Americans didn't want, nor do want, his Obamcare. What part of that doesn't he get?

You so deserve him Obots, your impostor is imploding and is incapable of uttering a sentence without the aid of multiple teleprompters much less taking any action against any of a host of issues facing us right no. Epic Fail, embrace your choice and ride it into the ground

Gee....ya think it is his " Afro-American Wealthy" spending, or his idiotic health care take over, or his letting lawyers get his terrorist buddies off, or playing golf and trying to feel up Beyonce in the White House, or hiring socialist czars,or making Hugo Chavez jokes on the people's plane, or his ever fatter wife harping about overeating while shown ramming down ice cream on taxpayer treated vacations for her and her 32 assistants, or his inability to even produce a legal birth certificate, or his droning speeches full of empty BS.

Obama is at a GM plant in Indiana today while North Korea attacks South Korea. His campaigning never ends. Our foreign policy is a disgrace. We can hope that we do not reelect this dope.

Barack Obama is finished as an American politician. The handwriting is on the wall. It is likely that candidates from the Left will challenge him in the primaries—including California's newly-elected Governor Jerry Brown—and that Hillary Clinton will be the ultimate nominee for the Democrats, despite her present denials.

Mr. President:

You may briefly take away My Freedom using the power of the state.
You should note however, that Liberty is my divine right and your time in office is so short.

The collective American public never fails to disappoint me with their lack of intelligence,particularly when it comes to politics and media manipulation. We are in the 8th inning of a world government takeover of America by bankers and they continue to play Democrats off against the Republicans.
Obama simply put represents continuity of government from Bush. Two years ago the media gave Obama, a messionic persona, based on vague esoteric concepts like hope and change. These are concepts without substance. To be a president you only need to lie, dupe and entertain the public for 6 months and voila.
Obama had the opportunity to skewer Cheney and Bush over corruption and war crimes and lying to the public about 2 wars. He did nothing saying "let's move on". Still think there is duality in government; most Americans still do, and we are amused by Children who believe in Santa Claus and the tooth fairy.
Even though only 40% approve of Obama don't give them too much credit. These same folks returned Harry Reid, Nancy and Barney in recent elections; ample evidence that the neurons aren't firing properly.
People work hard at their jobs and pay no attention to politics. Ironically if the political system collapses which is happening as I write; their livelyhoods and way of life goes with it.
People have evolved into a state of apathy where the evidence of their coming destruction is everywhere. The well being of their parents, children and other loved ones is at a turning point and they don't care.
Clearly Americans have the government they deserve and will repeat the same mistake at the polls in 2012 when the most entertaining and charismatic persona the media can create, assumes power and continues the Obama program. Don't bother waking up America, it's too late!


Thanks for leaving Ron Paul off, AGAIN. You guys are pretty amazing in your propaganda and "steering" of public opinion!

LOL Typical.

Remember and consider that Obama will never get below 16-18% thanks to one voting block that will stay loyal till the end. If you accept that premise, then only 20% actually support him. If nothing else seems this adjusted number is the only fair way to compare Obama to prior president approval ratings. Not PC but true!

He is a socialist and this country reject socialism at the ballot box every time, it's really that simple.


A majority of Americans have not decided that Sarah Palin is unqualified to be president. They've been told she is unqualified by the same news media that told them that Barry Obama WAS qualified and had all the attributes necessary to be a great leader and savior of the country. Were they being lied to then or are they being lied to now? Maybe finally, the voters will learn to make up their own minds without being led by the partisan media.

From now on if they have a (D) after their name they're NOT getting my vote nor my family's vote, nor anyone else that I can influence....It is time the democratic party was completely destroyed.

Who are the 39 % ? Obama is a failure... and he was one on 1/20/09.

Atta boy BO. Keep up the good work. Still a little over 2 years to go. How much more of our money can you spend? Might be time for another long awaited AND needed vacation. Looks like your change thing isnt working

Put me in the 39%!

President Obama has turned out to be a much better president than I expected -- more cool, more persistent, more balanced, and much more effective. As one who has experienced the dark side of the present medical system, the Health Care Reform Act was an answer to prayers. The prompt action to reverse the financial crisis and save the automobile industry. The re-introduction of controls to stabilize the financial industry and temper its worst excesses. The START treaty and advances in nuclear non-proliferation.

The Left thinks these achievements didn't go far enough, and perhaps they are right, but they are quite happy to knee-cap their own most effective advocate out of frustration. The Right is merely incomprehensible.

But those are not my problems. I'm just happy to have this man in office. Keep doing what you're doing, Mr. President, and I'll be proud to vote for you again. I don't care how few of us are left.

Obama is not incompetent. Everything he does is deliberate. He knows he has to break us down first before he can remold us into what he wants.

If what I have written above is accurate, and I think it is, I pray that others will see through what he's all about and demand his impeachment before he has done so much irreparable damage to the United States that we will never recover.

PENCE THUNE JINDAL 2012 -- give me a leader with smarts and jeuvos please.....

Mike wrote (@6:03am): "I'm not sure in what world dropping from 48% to 42% is "nearly 10%."

I'm not sure in what world either, Mike.

This article is talking about dropping from 49% to 39%...10 points.

the Great Uniter..HAHAHAAHHAAH.

Can you imagine what the number would be if Obama had the constant savaging by the press and media that GWB had to put up with? He would be at 5% by now.

Most of the comments in the thread come across as irrational hate. Hardly a single intelligent counter-point. This country is in trouble, and it has very little to do with Obama.

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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
President Obama
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