November 3, 2009
Posted: 08:52 AM ET
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One year after he won a historical presidential election, a slight majority of Americans approve of the job Barack Obama's doing in the White House.
"Obama's approval rating of 54 percent is nearly identical to the 53 percent of the vote he won a year ago," notes CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "And in nearly every demographic category, the percent that approve of Obama today is within two to three points of the percent who voted for him in 2008. It's a different story when we turn to ideology. His approval rating among liberals is 7 points higher than the number of liberals who voted for him. But among conservatives, the number who like Obama today is down 10 points compared to his share of the vote among that group in 2008."
The survey suggests that the president's approval rating remains over 50 percent even though most Americans disapprove of how Obama is handling the economy, health care, Afghanistan, Iraq, unemployment, illegal immigration and the federal budget deficit.
How does he do it?
"By retaining a reservoir of goodwill left over from his election to the White House a year ago. Six in 10 say Obama inspires confidence in them; six in 10 also call him a strong leader who is honest and trustworthy. Sixty-three percent say he is not a typical politician. More than half give Obama a thumbs-up on 11 of the 12 personal characteristics tested," adds Holland.
Only 45 percent say he has a clear plan for solving the country's problems - the only item on which a majority has a negative view of him.
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