Published November 19, 2009
An overwhelming number of American voters say they like President Obama as a person but disapprove of most of his policies, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday.
The poll, which surveyed 2,518 registered voters nationwide from Nov. 9 to 16, found that Obama's approach to health care reform is among the president's most unpopular domestic priorities -- with 53 percent saying they disapprove of his policy on health reform while 41 percent said they approve.
"Most Americans like President Barack Obama and might like to have a beer with him," Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, said in a press release Thursday. "But millions of voters who sided with him last November because they thought he would bring change to Washington aren't crazy about the kind of change he is trying to bring."
A similar Quinnipiac poll released Wednesday found that Obama's approval rating has dipped below 50 percent for the first time nationally. The survey showed that 48 percent approve of Obama's job performance while 42 percent disapprove.
Similarly, a Fox News poll released Thursday showed Obama's approval rating at a new low. Forty-six percent of respondents disapprove of the president's job performance while an equal percentage approved, the survey found. The poll, which surveyed 900 registered voters from Nov. 17 to Nov. 18, has a margin of error of 3 percentage points.
Support for Obama's handling of the war in Afghanistan has also slipped -- with 49 percent saying they disliked his approach to the eight-year-old war and 38 percent saying they approved of it. The findings are a drop from last October when 42 percent favored his handling of Afghanistan while 40 percent disapproved.
The survey showed that Americans' support for the war overall is dwindling. Forty-eight percent of voters disagree with the U.S. combat mission in Afghanistan, while 41 percent say it's the right thing to do, according to the poll. Quinnipiac University conducted a similar survey on Oct. 7 that found 52 percent in favor of the war and 37 percent against it.
But an overwhelming number of respondents -- 65 to 29 percent -- said eliminating the threat of Al Qaeda in Afghanistan "is a worthwhile goal," according to the poll.
By a 5 percent margin, respondents said Obama should send 40,000 additional troops to the region -- 47 to 42 percent, the survey found.
Both Quinnipiac polls have a 2-percentage point margin of error.