More good news for the president one day out from his State of the Union address: polls show his approval rating up to the mid-50s, driven by a sharp uptick in support from independents.
President Barack Obama’s approval ratings continue to strengthen – hitting their highest marks in well over a year – as he prepares for Tuesday’s State of the Union address, according to a new poll Monday.
In a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll, 55 percent of Americans surveyed Friday through Sunday said they approve of how Obama is doing his job, while 44 percent disapproved.
It’s his highest rating in the poll since November 2009, when he was at 55 pecent.
Among Democrats, Obama’s approval rating is at 87 percent, though among Republicans it’s at 19 percent. A majority of independents surveyed are positive about Obama’s overall performance, with 54 percent saying they approve.
That’s slightly better than Obama did in another CNN poll, conducted Jan. 14-16, where Obama’s approval rating was at 53 percent.
A Gallup poll conducted in early January found Obama’s approval at 53 percent, up 6 percentage points from November. A Washington Post-ABC News poll released last week had his approval rating at 54 percent.
But it’s not all good news as Obama heads into his State of the Union speech.
Only 45 percent of those surveyed said they approve the way Obama is handling the economy, while 54 percent disapprove, CNN found.
(That’s up from 40/59 in November.)
Overall, the president’s re-election prospects look pretty good today (see this must-read piece from Chris Cillizza on the math) and he can further help himself tomorrow by projecting an air of unity, “bigness” and generosity toward the opposition, which will surely respond with something unpleasant about “cutting spending.” Which message will Americans prefer? We’ll find out tomorrow.
Bloomberg has a preview of the speech.