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Obama job approval mired below 50% for 6th straight quarter

Great news for President Obama's never-ending, billion-dollar reelection campaign: His job approval rating didn't get any worse last quarter.

Of course, they're still not all that great -- they've averaged below 50% for most of his 912-day-old presidency.Obama in the white house, file

In the quarter between April 20 and July 19, Gallup reports this morning, the Democrat averaged a 46.8% job approval.

It could be worse; Obama's seventh quarter average was only 44.7%.

But he's a long way from what now seems like the halcyon days of 63% approval after his first quarter, back in 2009 when Obama's term was so full of promise, like closing the Guantanamo Bay detention facility, holding unemployment below 8% and bringing partisan Washington back together.

The good news for the aging Obama, who starts his 51st year early next month, is that both Presidents Reagan and Clinton also averaged below majority approval in their 10th quarters and still went on to a second term.

The bad news is that Jimmy Carter did the same in 1980 and went on to defeat. Also, both Reagan and Clinton showed significant approval improvement between their ninth and tenth quarters.

Obama did not.

This is the sixth straight quarter out of 10 that Obama's approval hasn't reached 50%. He last saw that mark after his first full year in office, well before his party lost control of the House of Representatives and even before the Libyan war.

-- Andrew Malcolm

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Photo: Pete Souza / White House

 
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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.
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