News / USA

Obama 'Worst President' Since WWII, Poll Finds

With the Key Bridge, linking Washington and Northern Virginia in the background, President Barack Obama speaks about the economy and transportation at Georgetown Waterfront Park in Washington, July 1, 2014.
With the Key Bridge, linking Washington and Northern Virginia in the background, President Barack Obama speaks about the economy and transportation at Georgetown Waterfront Park in Washington, July 1, 2014.

A new U.S. poll shows Americans think President Barack Obama is the country's worst president since World War II.

The independent Quinnipiac University poll said Wednesday that its survey taken late last month of more than 1,400 U.S. voters showed that 33 percent put Obama at the bottom of the list of 12 presidents who have served since 1945, with 28 percent naming his immediate predecessor, George W. Bush.

Ronald Reagan, the U.S. president through most of the 1980s, was picked by 35 percent as the best president since World War II. He was followed by Bill Clinton, who served in the 1990s, who was preferred by 18 percent.

"Over the span of 69 years of American history and 12 presidencies, President Barack Obama finds himself with President George W. Bush at the bottom of the popularity barrel," said Tim Malloy, assistant director of Quinnipiac University's polling unit.

A wide variety of recent surveys have shown weak approval for Obama, who was easily re-elected to a second term in 2012 over Republican Mitt Romney, but since then has faced several domestic and foreign policy setbacks. The Quinnipiac survey showed voters now think, by a 45 to 38 percent margin, the country would have been better off if Romney had won the election.

In the survey, Obama got negative grades for his handling of the economy, foreign policy, health care and terrorism, with those polled only giving him a favorable rating on environmental issues.

“He has taken a pretty big hit as far as foreign policy goes," Malloy noted.  "He has lost 10 percentage points as far as competence and the way he is handling that.  So that could play pretty heavily into it because that was one of his stronger cards, foreign policy, and now it is not so strong.”

Obama continues to try to rally supporters in the wake of weak poll numbers and some recent political setbacks.

The president says he will press ahead with executive action to deal with immigration reform amid strong indications Congress is unlikely to deal with the issue this year.

The Speaker of the House, Republican Congressman John Boehner, said recently he intends to initiate a federal lawsuit aimed at blocking the president’s use of executive orders.

“You know the Constitution makes it clear that the president’s job is to faithfully execute the laws, and in my view the president has not faithfully executed the laws," Boehner said.

President Obama has been dismissive of the Republican lawsuit threat and has vowed to take unilateral action where he can.

“Middle-class families cannot wait for Republicans in Congress to do stuff," Obama said.  "So sue me.  As long as they are doing nothing, I am not going to apologize for trying to do something.”

Foreign policy has long been one of the president’s political strengths.  But the recent turmoil in Iraq seems to be undercutting public confidence in Obama’s leadership, said analyst John Fortier with the Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington.

“I think the problem for the president is that conditions on the ground (in Iraq) are not good and he will get some of the blame for that," he said.  "So I do not think there are any good alternatives for him even though the American people are not united in what they want to do.”

Pollster Tim Malloy added that the president’s decision to act unilaterally has the potential for both political risk and reward.

“It’ is not easy for a second term president, ever.  And is the president going rogue?  Is he doing things arbitrarily and on his own?  Some would say he is.  But this has been historic gridlock in Washington and I am sure supporters of the president say he has got no other choice, and people who do not support him say he has gone off the reservation," Malloy said.

Democrats remain concerned the president’s weak poll numbers will hurt them in congressional midterm elections in November.  

Experts say Republicans are likely to hold their majority in the House of Representatives and have an excellent chance of gaining enough Democratic seats to reclaim a majority in the Senate.  That would give them control of both chambers of Congress for the final two years of Obama’s presidency.

Some information for this report provided by Reuters

You May Like

Turkey: No Ransom Paid for Release of Hostages Held by IS Militants

President Erdogan hails release of hostages as diplomatic success but declines to be drawn on whether their release freed Ankara's hand to take more active stance against insurgents More

Audio Sierra Leone Ends Ebola Lockdown

Health ministry says it has reached 75 percent of its target of visiting 1.5 million homes to locate infected, educate population about virus More

US Pivot to Asia Demands Delicate Balancing Act

As the tumult in the Middle East distracts Obama, shifting American focus eastward appears threatened More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 5
    Next 
by: Floyd Webb from: Chicago
July 03, 2014 7:27 AM
I never believe a Pole that is not from Warsaw. Oh, you said Poll!

The same applies!


by: D.LaPlante from: Spokane
July 02, 2014 4:20 PM
Where do I begin? This poll is the worst poll since WWII?


by: John from: Madison, WI
July 02, 2014 3:43 PM
Why is everyone so harsh with their opinions? You all sound like Democrats and Republicans in Congress trying to get something done. You hear something you don't like, immediately disregard the other person's stance completely, and then scream your opinion like it is a fact. It appears as if there is something wrong with the way the people in our governmental system interact as a whole. "W. Bush messes everything up and that's why Obama can't get anything done." " Obama has had plenty of time to clean things up and has only made it worse". The real problem is Congress and the President not being able to compromise, and look where we are now: Obama has said he will just do things on his own because you can't deny Congress is thwarting helping anything Obama wants to pass. Congress is now suing the President. How much inefficiency can there be in our system? Who is the one President that is not being attacked in these comments? Clinton. Why was he successful? Mostly, the economy. Everyone gets pissed when the economy sucks, which it has for the last 14 years. He didn't get too involved in Foreign Affairs (i.e., start a war). And focused on enacting policies in education, health care, and the environment that weren't too over the top to piss anyone off. Bush started a war, Obama completely changed our health care system. People say "we want better health care", but then you change the system completely and most can't handle dramatic change. People say "we want the world to be a safe place", but then you try to rid the world of an evil dictator and people can't handle it. The fact is, we are too tied up in Republican vs Democrat. If Obama started the Iraq war Democrats would support it. If Bush created BushCare Repubs would support it. A non-partisan democracy would force people to actually look at a representative's policies before voting. Instead, we have our defend our affiliation's whether right or wrong and blast others without truly listening to their side. So, long story short, we need more Bill Clinton's, but the type who don't get BJ's from interns at work.


by: stan from: Stockton, CA
July 02, 2014 3:40 PM
This info came from a Reuters Poll. I didn't see anybody questioning their polls when everything was coming up roses for Obama. The honeymoon is over, I'm just surprised it took people so long to realize that he wasn't qualified, prepared or competent enough to run this country. But he did have that speech in 2006 at the DNC. He's made his 15 minutes of fame last over 8 years. Impressive.


by: Susan from: California
July 02, 2014 3:34 PM
Obama will go down in history as one of the great presidents for all his accomplishments. Right now the right wing media is busy slamming his name into the ground. The Republican party has become so nasty in their tactics. It is really amazing all Obama has done with such a do nothing congress to deal with. Most people don't really understand what is going on. It is amazing the things they blame on Obama. I will give the Republicans credit for one thing, they have been successful in leading the poor little sheep astray.


by: charlotte from: deep south
July 02, 2014 3:26 PM
This an accurate poll regarding this sham of a POTUS! To supposedly have been Harvard educated and a Constitutional expert he is a disgrace. He should surrender his diploma like he did his law licence!


by: Herb from: Carrabelle. Fl
July 02, 2014 3:24 PM
Obama has failed miserably on stopping illegal immigration. Who is going to pay for all these illegals? Better not be the American Taxpayer! He is a looser in every other category. The only thing he did not do is get another 4,000 American Troops killed. YET!


by: joe from: montana
July 02, 2014 3:24 PM
Do we really need a poll to know this?


by: Rick from: San Diego
July 02, 2014 3:23 PM
Obama inherited the biggest mess in US history when Bush left office: Bush gave us a record breaking deficit, 2 wars that we couldn't seem to leave, 9/11 happening under Bush's watch, very high unemployment, invasion of Iraq based on lies, letting Osama bin Laden escape when we had him surrounded at Tora Bora, giving huge tax cuts to billionaires to increase the deficit, etc etc etc etc etc.... Bush was the worst president of all time - nobody else comes close to his record.


by: BRG from: Texas
July 02, 2014 3:21 PM
Wow this article is horribly bias. And that is modest assessment. And to say Reagan was one of the best??? How has that war on drugs worked out???? Billions spent to kick in pot heads doors and billions more spent to lock up perpetrators of victimless crimes. And then wonder why the guy that got locked up for pot is now a gang member? I wonder why? Obama is doing well in my opinion, I personally like how he just doesn't act and reviews all possible solutions unlike other predecessors . And how is Iraq his fault? They (Iraq/middle east) have been killing each other for hundreds if not thousands of years and we think we can stop that from the other side of the world. I mean everyone was complaining on the resources spent yet when we return the country it goes to h3ll and it is Obama's fault. But I have herd this before, my car broke down It's Obama's fault. Its sad people can't see past the BS. In these peoples eyes Obama can't do anything right. What about the entire economy he fixed? During wonderful Bush Jr. I hope these article improve......

Comments page of 5
    Next 

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Natural Gas Export Plan Divides Maryland Towni
X
Deborah Block
September 21, 2014 2:12 PM
A U.S. power company that has been importing natural gas now wants to export it. If approved, its plant in Lusby, Maryland, would likely be the first terminal on the United States East Coast to export liquefied natural gas from American pipelines. While some residents welcome the move because it will create jobs, others oppose it, saying the expansion could be a safety and environmental hazard. VOA’s Deborah Block examines the controversy.
Video

Video Natural Gas Export Plan Divides Maryland Town

A U.S. power company that has been importing natural gas now wants to export it. If approved, its plant in Lusby, Maryland, would likely be the first terminal on the United States East Coast to export liquefied natural gas from American pipelines. While some residents welcome the move because it will create jobs, others oppose it, saying the expansion could be a safety and environmental hazard. VOA’s Deborah Block examines the controversy.
Video

Video Difficult Tactical Battle Ahead Against IS Militants in Syria

The U.S. president has ordered the military to intensify its fight against the Islamic State, including in Syria. But how does the military conduct air strikes in a country that is not a U.S. ally? VOA correspondent Carla Babb reports from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Iran, World Powers Seek Progress in Nuclear Talks

Iran and the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany, known as the P5 + 1, have started a new round of talks on Iran's nuclear program. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports that as the negotiations take place in New York, a U.S. envoy is questioning Iran's commitment to peaceful nuclear activity.
Video

Video Alibaba Shares Soar in First Day of Trading

China's biggest online retailer hit the market Friday -- with its share price soaring on the New York Stock Exchange. The shares were priced at $68, but trading stalled at the opening, as sellers held onto their shares, waiting for buyers to bid up the price. More on the world's biggest initial public offering from VOA’s Bernard Shusman in New York.
Video

Video Obama Goes to UN With Islamic State, Ebola on Agenda

President Obama goes to the United Nations General Assembly to rally nations to support a coalition against Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria. He also will look for nations to back his plan to fight the Ebola virus in West Africa. As VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports, Obama’s efforts reflect new moves by the U.S. administration to take a leading role in addressing world crises.
Video

Video Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land Called Calais

The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching Europe. And for those forunate enough to reach a place like Calais, France, only find that their problems aren't over. Lisa Bryant has the story.
Video

Video Westgate Siege Anniversary Brings Back Painful Memories

One year after it happened, the survivors of the terror attack on Nairobi's Westgate Shopping Mall still cannot shake the images of that tragic incident. For VOA, Mohammed Yusuf tells the story of victims still waiting for the answer to the question 'how could this happen?'
Video

Video Militant Assault in Syria Displaces Thousands of Kurds

A major assault by Islamic State militants on Kurds in Syria has sent a wave of new refugees to the Turkish border, where they were stopped by Turkish border security. Turkey is already hosting about 700,000 Syrian refugees who fled the civil war between the government and the opposition. But the government in Ankara has a history of strained relations with Turkey's Kurdish minority. Zlatica Hoke reports Turkey is asking for international help.
Video

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

The International Whaling Commission, meeting in Slovenia, has voted to uphold a court ruling banning Japan from hunting whales in the Antarctic Ocean. Conservationists hailed the ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid