Tuesday, December 9, 2014
Republicans are enjoying a five-year peak in popularity after their wins in the midterm elections, according to a new Bloomberg Politics poll, while Barack Obama struggles with his lowest job approval rating, at 39%
Obama also faces a backlash from independents who oppose his unilateral moves on immigration, and just 24% say that the country is on the right track, the lowest rating since September 2011. Forty-five percent of Americans say that they now view the Republican Party favorably, while 47% hold an unfavorable view. That’s the best showing the party has had since the inception of the poll in September 2009. Opinion about the Democratic Party has plunged, with a favorable rating of 41% and an unfavorable rating of 50%. This was Democrats’ worst showing in more than five years. "This is a rising tide for Republicans while the tide has kind of gone out for the Democrats," said J. Ann Selzer, president of Selzer & Co., which conducted the poll. Obama is viewed favorably by 45% of Americans, a tick higher than in a June 2014. A bright spot in the survey: his approval rating on managing the economy rose five points since June to 42%, although a majority, 53%, still disapprove of the job he's doing on that issue. Americans also issued negative ratings for his handling of health care, the budget deficit, immigration and foreign policy. His lowest approval rating — 32% — is on the question of negotiating with the Republican majority in the U.S. House. As for Obama’s decision to take executive action to give some illegal immigrants temporary legal status, 56% say that they don’t approve, while 39% are okay with it and 5% aren’t sure. This is partly a partisan issue; 83% of Republicans oppose the decisions while two-thirds of Democrats favor them. More ominously for Obama, though, a clear majority — 57% — of independents oppose the actions.