December 9, 2009 - Obama Approval Falls To New Low, Quinnipiac University National Poll Finds; U.S. Voters Oppose Health Care Plan By Wide Margin

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American voters give President Barack Obama a split 46 - 44 percent job approval, his lowest ever, and both the health care reform package that he wants Congress to pass and his personal rating on handling health care now win support from less than four in 10 Americans, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

Voters disapprove 52 - 38 percent of the health care reform proposal under consideration in Congress, and they disapprove 56 - 38 percent of President Obama's handling of health care, down from 53 - 41 percent in a November 19 survey by the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh- pe-ack) University.

But voters support 56 - 38 percent giving people the option of being covered by a government health insurance plan, compared to 57 - 35 percent November 19.

American voters trust Obama more than Republicans in Congress to handle health care 44 - 37 percent, down from 45 - 36 percent three weeks ago. Voters disapprove 58 - 30 percent of the way Republicans in Congress are doing their job, and disapprove 56 - 33 percent of Democrats in Congress.

American voters say 63 - 30 percent that extending health insurance to all will raise their cost of health care, although they are split 47 - 46 percent on whether they are willing to pay more to make sure everyone is covered. Voters split 48 - 46 percent on whether they think covering everyone will decrease the quality of their own care, but by 71 - 21 percent they do not think universal coverage is worth lower quality of care.

"It's a good thing for those pushing the health care overhaul in Congress that the American people don't get a vote. At this time, supporters are down 14 percentage points," said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

"President Barack Obama's job approval rating continues to slide and it's evident the deterioration stems from voter unhappiness over domestic policy matters," Brown added.

American voters disapprove 54 - 41 percent of Obama's handling of the economy, down from a 52 - 43 percent disapproval November 18 and his worst score ever on this issue. The biggest shift is among Democrats who approve 71 - 24 percent, down from 77 - 18 percent three weeks ago.

The biggest drop in Obama's overall approval is among independent voters, who disapprove 51 - 37 percent, down from 46 - 43 percent disapproval.

The President's support declines as one goes up the age and income scale. Analyzed by religion, Obama gets a thumbs up from 32 percent of white Protestants, 42 percent of white Roman Catholics and 52 percent of Jews.

"The decline in Obama's overall approval in the last month has been small, with the exception of independent voters who went from three points negative to 14 points," Brown said. "If the trend continues, it won't be long before he could be in the unenviable position of having more Americans disapprove than approve of his job performance.

"The White House certainly is concerned about Obama's approval rating, but the President has three years before facing the voters again. With just 11 months until congressional elections, the White House and all Democrats must worry about the steady deterioration in their lead over the GOP in congressional job performance. Now, only 33 percent give the Democrats in Congress a positive rating, compared to 30 percent for Republicans. Last July Democrats had a nine point edge.

"Also, the 20-point lead in July and nine point lead in November that Obama enjoyed when voters were asked who they trusted more to handle health care - he or congressional Republicans - has shrunk to just seven points, 44 - 37 percent."

From December 1 - 6, Quinnipiac University surveyed 2,313 registered voters nationwide with a margin of error of +/- 2 percentage points.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public opinion surveys in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Florida, Ohio and the nation as a public service and for research. For more data or RSS feed- http://www.quinnipiac.edu/polling.xml, call (203) 582-5201, or follow us on Twitter.

1. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling his job as President?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    His
 
Approve              46%    17%    80%    37%    42%    51%    38%    89%    65%
Disapprove           44     75     11     51     50     38     51      6     28
DK/NA                10      8      9     11      8     11     11      6      6
 
                     AGE IN YRS.......    INCOME.............  POL PHIL.........
                     18-34  35-54  55+    <50    50-100 >100K  Lib    Mod    Con
 
Approve              56%    44%    42%    49%    45%    44%    74%    56%    21%
Disapprove           32     49     47     40     47     49     16     33     72
DK/NA                12      7     11     11      8      8     10     10      7
 
                                   WHITE.............
                     NoColl Coll   BrnAgn                      Military
                     Degree Degree Evngl  Prot   Cath   Jew    Households
 
Approve              44%    51%    23%    32%    42%    52%    41%
Disapprove           45     41     68     57     50     35     49
DK/NA                11      8      9     10      9     13     10
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling his job as President? (*High also 59% Mar 2009)
                                                             APPROVE.......
                                                             High    Low
                     Dec 9   Nov 18  Oct 8   Aug 6   July 2  Jun 4   Dec 9
                     2009    2009    2009    2009    2009    2009*   2009
 
Approve              46      48      50      50      57      59      46
Disapprove           44      42      41      42      33      31      44
DK/NA                10      10       9       9      10      10      10
 
                     INDEPENDENTS.........................................
                                                             APPROVE......
                                                             High    Low
                     Dec 9   Nov 18  Oct 8   Aug 6   July 2  Jun 4   Dec 9
                     2009    2009    2009    2009    2009    2009    2009
 
Approve              37      43      45      45      52      57      37
Disapprove           51      46      44      45      37      30      51
DK/NA                11      11      11      10      11      13      11
 
 
2. Do you approve or disapprove of the way the Democrats in Congress are handling their job?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    His
 
Approve              33%    12%    62%    22%    29%    36%    27%    66%    45%
Disapprove           56     80     28     66     63     50     63     26     34
DK/NA                11      8     10     12      8     14     10      8     20
 
                     AGE IN YRS.......    INCOME.............  POL PHIL.........
                     18-34  35-54  55+    <50    50-100 >100K  Lib    Mod    Con
 
Approve              40%    31%    30%    36%    28%    32%    55%    37%    17%
Disapprove           45     61     60     51     63     64     34     51     76
DK/NA                15      8     11     13      9      4     11     12      7
 
                                   WHITE.............
                     NoColl Coll   BrnAgn                      Military
                     Degree Degree Evngl  Prot   Cath   Jew    Households
 
Approve              32%    35%    16%    20%    29%    46%    25%
Disapprove           56     58     74     70     62     48     66
DK/NA                12      7     10     10      8      6     10
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way the Democrats in Congress are handling their job? (*Low also 33% Oct 2009)
                                                             APPROVE......
                                                             High    Low
                     Dec 9   Nov 19  Oct 8   Aug 6   July 2  Mar 4   Dec 9
                     2009    2009    2009    2009    2009    2009    2009*
 
Approve              33      36      33      35      38      45      33
Disapprove           56      55      56      55      50      45      56
DK/NA                11       9      11      10      12      10      11
 
 
3. Do you approve or disapprove of the way the Republicans in Congress are handling their job?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    His
 
Approve              30%    53%    18%    25%    30%    29%    31%    27%    29%
Disapprove           58     36     72     62     60     57     58     62     51
DK/NA                12     12     10     12     10     14     11     12     20
 
                     AGE IN YRS.......    INCOME.............  POL PHIL.........
                     18-34  35-54  55+    <50    50-100 >100K  Lib    Mod    Con
 
Approve              34%    29%    28%    32%    27%    29%    18%    25%    41%
Disapprove           50     62     60     55     60     63     75     62     48
DK/NA                16      9     12     13     13      8      7     13     10
 
                                   WHITE.............
                     NoColl Coll   BrnAgn                      Military
                     Degree Degree Evngl  Prot   Cath   Jew    Households
 
Approve              31%    26%    37%    36%    30%    25%    30%
Disapprove           55     66     51     53     61     66     57
DK/NA                13      9     12     11      9     10     13
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way the Republicans in Congress are handling their job?
                                                             APPROVE......
                                                             High    Low
                     Dec 9   Nov 19  Oct 8   Aug 6   July 2  Nov 19  Oct 8
                     2009    2009    2009    2009    2009    2009    2009
 
Approve              30      31      25      29      29      31      25
Disapprove           58      58      64      59      57      58      64
DK/NA                12      11      11      12      14      11      11
 
 
4. In general, how satisfied are you with the way things are going in the nation today? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    His
 
Very satisfied        3%     3%     5%     1%     2%     4%     1%    11%     2%
Smwht satisfied      26     12     42     21     24     27     21     46     32
Smwht dissatisfied   32     29     33     32     31     32     34     21     33
Very dissatisfied    39     56     18     44     42     36     43     18     29
DK/NA                 1      1      1      1      1      1      -      4      4
 
                     AGE IN YRS.......    INCOME.............  POL PHIL.........
                     18-34  35-54  55+    <50    50-100 >100K  Lib    Mod    Con
 
Very satisfied        3%     3%     3%     3%     2%     2%     6%     1%     2%
Smwht satisfied      32     23     24     26     24     29     39     32     12
Smwht dissatisfied   36     31     29     33     33     33     32     37     27
Very dissatisfied    27     42     42     37     41     35     21     29     58
DK/NA                 1      1      2      1      1      1      1      1      1
 
                                   WHITE.............
                     NoColl Coll   BrnAgn                      Military
                     Degree Degree Evngl  Prot   Cath   Jew    Households
 
Very satisfied        3%     2%     2%     2%     1%     6%     3%
Smwht satisfied      24     31     13     18     25     30     19
Smwht dissatisfied   31     34     31     33     32     34     32
Very dissatisfied    41     33     54     47     41     29     46
DK/NA                 1      -      -      -      1      -      1
 
TREND: In general, how satisfied are you with the way things are going in the nation today? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied?
                                                             VERY+SMWHT SAT
                                                             High    Low
                     Dec 9   Nov 19  Oct 8   Aug 6   July 2  Dec 11  Nov 13
                     2009    2009    2009    2009    2009    2001    2008
 
Very satisfied        3       3       3       4       5      21       2
Smwht satisfied      26      27      27      31      34      47      14
Smwht dissatisfied   32      30      31      30      29      19      38
Very dissatisfied    39      39      38      34      31      10      44
DK/NA                 1       1       1       1       1       3       2
 
 
5. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling - the economy?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    His
 
Approve              41%    14%    71%    33%    36%    46%    33%    85%    49%
Disapprove           54     82     24     60     60     48     61     13     46
DK/NA                 5      4      4      7      4      6      6      2      4
 
                     AGE IN YRS.......    INCOME.............  POL PHIL.........
                     18-34  35-54  55+    <50    50-100 >100K  Lib    Mod    Con
 
Approve              47%    39%    39%    44%    37%    40%    67%    49%    19%
Disapprove           45     57     56     51     58     57     26     46     77
DK/NA                 8      4      5      6      5      3      7      6      4
 
                                   WHITE.............
                     NoColl Coll   BrnAgn                      Military
                     Degree Degree Evngl  Prot   Cath   Jew    Households
 
Approve              38%    48%    20%    27%    36%    52%    35%
Disapprove           55     49     77     68     57     45     59
DK/NA                 6      3      3      5      7      3      6
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling - the economy?
                                                             APPROVE......
                                                             High    Low
                     Dec 9   Nov 18  Oct 8   Aug 6   July 2  Mar 4   Dec 9
                     2009    2009    2009    2009    2009    2009    2009
 
Approve              41      43      47      45      52      57      41
Disapprove           54      52      46      49      42      33      54
DK/NA                 5       5       7       6       6      10       5
 
 
7. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling - health care?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    His
 
Approve              38%    10%    67%    32%    35%    41%    29%    86%    59%
Disapprove           56     86     27     61     59     53     65     11     36
DK/NA                 6      4      6      7      6      6      7      3      5
 
                     AGE IN YRS.......    INCOME.............  POL PHIL.........
                     18-34  35-54  55+    <50    50-100 >100K  Lib    Mod    Con
 
Approve              47%    36%    34%    39%    36%    37%    64%    46%    16%
Disapprove           44     60     58     53     60     58     28     48     79
DK/NA                 9      4      7      8      4      4      8      6      5
 
                                   WHITE.............
                     NoColl Coll   BrnAgn                      Military
                     Degree Degree Evngl  Prot   Cath   Jew    Households
 
Approve              37%    42%    17%    23%    31%    49%    31%
Disapprove           57     54     79     71     64     45     63
DK/NA                 7      5      4      6      5      6      6
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling - health care?
                     Dec 9   Nov 19  Oct 8   Aug 5   July 2
                     2009    2009    2009    2009    2009
 
Approve              38      41      41      39      46
Disapprove           56      53      51      52      42
DK/NA                 6       6       8       9      13
 
 
9. Who do you trust to do a better job handling health care - President Obama or the Republicans in Congress?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    His
 
President Obama      44%     9%    81%    37%    40%    49%    36%    86%    65%
Reps in Congress     37     75     10     37     41     33     44      6     24
DK/NA                19     16      9     26     19     18     20      8     11
 
                     AGE IN YRS.......    INCOME.............  POL PHIL.........
                     18-34  35-54  55+    <50    50-100 >100K  Lib    Mod    Con
 
President Obama      55%    41%    40%    47%    41%    43%    79%    53%    17%
Reps in Congress     32     42     36     34     44     41     11     27     63
DK/NA                13     17     24     19     16     16     10     20     19
 
                                   WHITE.............
                     NoColl Coll   BrnAgn                      Military
                     Degree Degree Evngl  Prot   Cath   Jew    Households
 
President Obama      43%    48%    20%    28%    38%    61%    38%
Reps in Congress     37     36     61     53     38     32     43
DK/NA                20     16     19     19     24      7     20
 
TREND: Who do you trust to do a better job handling health care - President Obama or the Republicans in Congress?
                     Dec 9   Nov 19  Oct 8   Aug 5   July 1
                     2009    2009    2009    2009    2009
 
President Obama      44      45      47      46      53
Reps in Congress     37      36      31      37      33
DK/NA                19      19      21      16      14
 
 
10. From what you've heard or read, do you mostly approve or mostly disapprove of the proposed changes to the health care system under consideration in Congress?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    His
 
Mostly approve       38%    11%    65%    32%    34%    41%    31%    77%    53%
Mostly disapprove    52     82     25     57     57     48     60     13     38
DK/NA                10      7     11     11      9     11     10     10      9
 
                     AGE IN YRS.......    INCOME.............  POL PHIL.........
                     18-34  35-54  55+    <50    50-100 >100K  Lib    Mod    Con
 
Mostly approve       53%    35%    30%    39%    36%    40%    67%    44%    16%
Mostly disapprove    39     56     57     48     58     56     26     45     75
DK/NA                 8      8     13     13      7      4      7     11      8
 
                                   WHITE.............
                     NoColl Coll   BrnAgn                      Military
                     Degree Degree Evngl  Prot   Cath   Jew    Households
 
Mostly approve       35%    45%    18%    23%    35%    49%    32%
Mostly disapprove    53     49     74     66     57     47     60
DK/NA                12      5      8     11      9      5      8
 
 
11. Do you support or oppose giving people the option of being covered by a government health insurance plan that would compete with private plans?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    His
 
Support              56%    29%    81%    55%    53%    60%    50%    86%    78%
Oppose               38     64     14     40     43     33     44      7     19
DK/NA                 6      7      5      5      5      7      6      7      3
 
                     AGE IN YRS.......    INCOME.............  POL PHIL.........
                     18-34  35-54  55+    <50    50-100 >100K  Lib    Mod    Con
 
Support              68%    57%    48%    60%    53%    55%    84%    66%    33%
Oppose               29     38     43     34     41     42     13     29     61
DK/NA                 3      5      9      6      6      3      3      5      6
 
                                   WHITE.............
                     NoColl Coll   BrnAgn                      Military
                     Degree Degree Evngl  Prot   Cath   Jew    Households
 
Support              56%    58%    37%    44%    52%    66%    52%
Oppose               37     38     58     50     44     23     41
DK/NA                 7      3      6      6      4     11      7
 
TREND: Do you support or oppose giving people the option of being covered by a government health insurance plan that would compete with private plans?
                     Dec 9   Nov 19  Oct 8   Aug 5   July 1
                     2009    2009    2009    2009    2009
 
Support              56      57      61      62      69
Oppose               38      35      34      32      26
DK/NA                 6       8       6       6       5
 
 
12. President Obama has pledged that health insurance reform will not add to our federal budget deficit over the next decade. Do you think that President Obama will be able to keep his promise or do you think any health care plan that Congress passes and President Obama signs will add to the federal budget deficit?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    His
 
 
Keep promise         19%     6%    37%    11%    16%    21%    14%    48%    20%
Add to deficit       74     90     53     82     78     70     80     37     75
DK/NA                 7      4     10      7      6      8      6     15      4
 
                     AGE IN YRS.......    INCOME.............  POL PHIL.........
                     18-34  35-54  55+    <50    50-100 >100K  Lib    Mod    Con
 
Keep promise         23%    17%    17%    21%    13%    20%    36%    19%     8%
Add to deficit       71     77     73     71     83     77     56     74     86
DK/NA                 6      5     11      8      4      4      8      7      6
 
                                   WHITE.............
                     NoColl Coll   BrnAgn                      Military
                     Degree Degree Evngl  Prot   Cath   Jew    Households
 
Keep promise         18%    21%    10%    11%    12%    24%    16%
Add to deficit       74     74     85     83     82     71     79
DK/NA                 8      5      5      6      6      5      5
 
TREND: President Obama has pledged that health insurance reform will not add to our federal budget deficit over the next decade. Do you think that President Obama will be able to keep his promise or do you think any health care plan that Congress passes and President Obama signs will add to the federal budget deficit?
                     Dec 9   Nov 19  Oct 8   Aug 5
                     2009    2009    2009    2009
 
Keep promise         19      19      19      21
Add to deficit       74      72      71      72
DK/NA                 7       9       9       7
 
 
13. Do you think that extending health insurance to all Americans would increase your health care costs or not?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    His
 
Yes                  63%    83%    44%    66%    63%    63%    65%    50%    65%
No                   30     12     47     27     31     29     27     41     32
DK/NA                 7      5      9      7      6      8      8      9      3
 
                     AGE IN YRS.......    INCOME.............  POL PHIL.........
                     18-34  35-54  55+    <50    50-100 >100K  Lib    Mod    Con
 
Yes                  58%    64%    64%    60%    68%    66%    39%    56%    82%
No                   35     31     25     31     27     31     52     36     13
DK/NA                 7      5     10      8      5      3      9      8      5
 
                                   WHITE.............
                     NoColl Coll   BrnAgn                      Military
                     Degree Degree Evngl  Prot   Cath   Jew    Households
 
Yes                  64%    60%    74%    71%    64%    53%    69%
No                   28     35     20     21     30     42     26
DK/NA                 8      5      6      8      7      5      6
 
 
14. Do you think that extending health insurance to all Americans is worth increasing your health care costs or not?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    His
 
Yes                  47%    20%    69%    47%    42%    51%    43%    65%    54%
No                   46     70     26     45     50     41     49     28     40
DK/NA                 7      9      5      8      7      8      8      6      6
 
                     AGE IN YRS.......    INCOME.............  POL PHIL.........
                     18-34  35-54  55+    <50    50-100 >100K  Lib    Mod    Con
 
Yes                  51%    49%    41%    47%    47%    52%    76%    57%    22%
No                   42     46     47     43     48     45     22     36     69
DK/NA                 7      5     12     10      5      3      3      6      9
 
                                   WHITE.............
                     NoColl Coll   BrnAgn                      Military
                     Degree Degree Evngl  Prot   Cath   Jew    Households
 
Yes                  44%    55%    31%    37%    44%    47%    46%
No                   48     38     62     54     49     38     47
DK/NA                 8      6      7      9      7     15      8
 
 
15. Do you think that extending health insurance to all Americans would decrease your quality of health care or not?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    His
 
Yes                  48%    73%    26%    50%    54%    42%    53%    27%    38%
No                   46     21     68     44     42     50     41     69     56
DK/NA                 6      6      6      5      4      8      6      4      6
 
                     AGE IN YRS.......    INCOME.............  POL PHIL.........
                     18-34  35-54  55+    <50    50-100 >100K  Lib    Mod    Con
 
Yes                  45%    50%    48%    45%    52%    51%    20%    41%    70%
No                   53     47     41     49     43     44     74     54     23
DK/NA                 3      4     10      7      5      4      6      5      7
 
                                   WHITE.............
                     NoColl Coll   BrnAgn                      Military
                     Degree Degree Evngl  Prot   Cath   Jew    Households
 
Yes                  50%    43%    63%    58%    51%    48%    52%
No                   44     52     29     35     44     52     42
DK/NA                 6      5      7      7      5      1      5
 
 
16. Do you think that extending health insurance to all Americans is worth decreasing your quality of health care or not?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    His
 
Yes                  21%    11%    30%    20%    23%    20%    19%    34%    18%
No                   71     84     62     73     69     73     73     60     77
DK/NA                 7      5      8      7      7      7      7      5      5
 
                     AGE IN YRS.......    INCOME.............  POL PHIL.........
                     18-34  35-54  55+    <50    50-100 >100K  Lib    Mod    Con
 
Yes                  27%    19%    22%    23%    19%    18%    35%    24%    11%
No                   69     77     66     68     76     76     56     69     83
DK/NA                 4      5     12      8      4      5      9      7      6
 
                                   WHITE.............
                     NoColl Coll   BrnAgn                      Military
                     Degree Degree Evngl  Prot   Cath   Jew    Households
 
Yes                  22%    21%    15%    17%    17%    24%    22%
No                   71     72     79     75     76     68     70
DK/NA                 7      8      6      8      7      8      9