Barack Obama's 78 Percent Approval Rating


President-elect Barack Obama gets soaring marks for his handling of the transition and his choices for the Cabinet, a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll finds, even at a time the public is downbeat over the economy.

More than three of four Americans, including a majority of Republicans, approve of the job Obama has done so far -- broad-based support he'll need as he faces tough decisions ahead.

By 69%-25%, those surveyed approve of his pick of New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, his former Democratic primary rival, as secretary of State.

By an even wider margin, 80%-14%, they favor his decision to ask President Bush's Pentagon chief, Defense Secretary Robert Gates, to stay on the job.

These numbers are just stunning, and serve as further proof that Barack Obama will enter the White House with a greater mandate than any newly elected President in a very long time. While I certainly do not expect this spread to hold indefinitely, or even necessarily for the duration of Obama's first 100 days in office, this level of support gives Obama the juice to hit the ground running on January 20. A sky high approval rating doesn't mean that a President should get everything he wants -- but it does mean he should be able to get much or even most of it.

Update [2008-12-3 16:40:46 by Jonathan Singer]:Rasmussen pegs Obama's approval rating at 67 percent -- up 15 points since the election.

Tags: Approval Rating, Barack Obama, transition (all tags)



Too early to be tossing around FDR comparisons:

But that won't stop people from doing it.

Obama is a smart cookie and I expect his popularity to remain high for a very long time.

by Dracomicron 2008-12-03 11:44AM | 0 recs

The approval ratings, which are Bush's albatross around his neck, are a very important component of governing.  Even though we understand how much a poor approval rating amongst all Americans has hurt Bush some progressives don't seem to understand that the same applies to Obama.  Keeping on Gates has proven wildly popular to the tune of 8 to 1 approval.   That will go a long way to provide wind at our backs and strong cover for universal health care and major progressive changes in energy and environmental policies.  Sometimes progressives don't choose their battles wisely and tend to miss the forest for the trees.  

by devilrays 2008-12-04 05:15AM | 0 recs
Re: Barack Obama's 78 Percent Approval Rating

But but, certain the MSM told me Obama is already a disaster because he has not fixed the economy and certain progressive bloggers said he is a failure because of the his cabinent appointments. How can the public be so wrong?

by RandyMI 2008-12-03 11:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Barack Obama's 78 Percent Approval Rating

He's unelectable.

by Aris Katsaris2 2008-12-03 11:53AM | 0 recs
God damn America

Bitter sweetie Jeremiah Wright clings to guns & religion with Bill Ayers as That One scratches his nose with his middle finger, clearly telling Hillary Clinton that she's likable enough.

by Dracomicron 2008-12-03 11:56AM | 0 recs
People can discern performance from persona?

Who would have thought. The pumas told us he was all persona and that there was no substance (and that his cabinet picks were deplorable), but I guess not. And as backup for my assertion that people can tell the difference between the two, King George's approval rating is -18% today.

by iohs2008 2008-12-03 12:22PM | 0 recs
They really do

I remember the emotional pleas that she must turn down the (sexist and misogynistic) offer.

Then she accepted (sexist and misogynistic) it.

Then it meant that... wait... what now? Where were they going with this.

pumas are so fun.

by iohs2008 2008-12-03 12:50PM | 0 recs
Re: They really do

The PUMAs are irrelevant and thankfully so. Politics isn't static and they are stuck on May 30th 2008. Their world ended then. Mine didn't.

In September I actually had The Confluence delete every comment I ever made on that blog. I didn't like Obama but some of the things they wrote were beyond the pale. Part of their problem is while passionate, they are not sophisticated enough to know who is who. Thus they would qoute Thomas Sowell, Jerome Corsi, Amir Taheri, the New York Sun. Suddenly the neo-cons were the Bible on Obama. When "liberals" start quoting neo-conservatives, I draw the line.

I was more of a TalkLeft guy.

by Charles Lemos 2008-12-03 02:26PM | 0 recs
Or more specifically... was only about them.

Identity politics run amok.

by iohs2008 2008-12-03 04:13PM | 0 recs
Re: I remember them

The small sliver of PUMAs who were steadfast McCain supporters until the end were for the most part no Democrats.  Reading some of the nonsense they spewed on their sites and on it became clear that there were many Republicans pretending to be upset "Democrats for Hillary" trying to stir discontent, a tactic that failed miserably.

 The few real PUMAs who actually were Democrats remained in that camp because they generally did not want to admit to being wrong or had succumbed totally to identity politics despite their chosen identity throwing her full, considerable power behind Obama.  The more troubling slivers were made up of unabashed racists and conservative Democrats who had no inkling that their chosen candidate had proposed programs on the domestic front that were more liberal than Obama's.  

by devilrays 2008-12-04 04:40AM | 0 recs
Re: Barack Obama's 78 Percent Approval Rating

52% of the popular vote isn't a mandate, but Jonathan's right this is what matters now. This is a mandate.

I must say that a few of Obama's press statements have impressed me. Avoiding groupthink, being attentive to dissenting views, providing the vision and direction. All good things that engender confidence.

by Charles Lemos 2008-12-03 12:01PM | 0 recs
Re: Barack Obama's 78 Percent Approval Rating


And yes it is.

by lojasmo 2008-12-03 12:38PM | 0 recs
Re: Barack Obama's 78 Percent Approval Rating

Oops, I forgot the .8%

by Charles Lemos 2008-12-03 02:27PM | 0 recs
Re: Barack Obama's 78 Percent Approval Rating

Yes you did.  If you're rounding (which you were) and there's a "0.8" you should go up to the next highest whole number.

I'm not even good at math.

by lojasmo 2008-12-05 02:43AM | 0 recs
bush claimed a mandate

when he didn't even win the election! as far as im concerned, winning more than 2X's the electoral votes of your opponent and bringing into the blue column states that haven't voted democratic in a generation is a mandate.

by highgrade 2008-12-03 02:36PM | 0 recs
Get your facts straight. 53%

And It sure is a mandate. btw he also got 68% of the EV's.

Only Lyndon Johnson and FDR got more than 53% for the dems since WWII. Reagan got 53% in one his wins (second one  I think). By historical comparison it was a huge win for the dems and a clear mandate.

by YourConcernsAreNoted 2008-12-03 05:39PM | 0 recs
Re: Get your facts straight. 53%

He has a mandate and with 78% approval, Rethug congressfolks in states who voted for Obama are going to think twice about opposing BHO.  Some of them are going to shake in their boots.

by hawkseye 2008-12-03 08:02PM | 0 recs
It really comes

down to the fact that he is being transparent and he's talking to the press.  There is something out there everyday about what he's planning to do, it reassures people and it's helping him set up his agenda so that when he gets into office he can hit the ground running.

by Ellinorianne 2008-12-03 12:27PM | 0 recs
Re: It really comes

agreed  also I think it has something to with  
most president-elects would be enjoying a vacation right now after a tough GE
instead he went to work right after the election

I am not that old and I don't remember another president doing this

by wellinformed 2008-12-03 01:00PM | 0 recs
Re: It really comes

Agreed. He's been very measured and thoughtful. He's talking vision without getting bogged down in details. It's all quite reassuring and he seems in control. It's a good start.

by Charles Lemos 2008-12-03 02:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Barack Obama's 78 Percent Approval Rating

his numbers will drop once america finds out about

rev wright, rezko,ayers, and when Phillip J berg
the great lawyer with a proven track record for exposing conspiracies wins the lawsuits that shows obama birth cert is a fake  he is going down  just wait..............................
any day now ......

by wellinformed 2008-12-03 12:57PM | 0 recs
Re: Barack Obama's 78 Percent Approval Rating

He's stepping up too the job NOW not Jan 20th. He sees that BV$H is finished and could care less at this pt. He realizes that the country cannot afford to drift on too the rocks in the next 58 days. Nevertheless, the culture of arrogance and malfeasance BV$H engendered in both Gov't and Private leadership will take yrs. too change. The simple truth is the country is being run by a bunch of clueless assholes from top too bottom. How one man can change this is going to be interesting too watch.

by Blutodog 2008-12-03 01:09PM | 0 recs
by sepulvedaj3 2008-12-03 01:37PM | 0 recs


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