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Poll: Obama's Public Approval Increases

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks during the "Together We Thrive: Tucson and America" at the University of Arizona in Tucson, Arizona, 12 Jan 2011

A new opinion poll finds U.S. voters are starting to look at President Barack Obama's performance more favorably.

The survey released Thursday by the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute finds 48 percent of voters approve of the job the president is doing, compared to 44 percent who disapprove.

The figures are an improvement for the president since November, when a poll from the institute showed Mr. Obama's approval rating at 44 percent, with nearly half of those surveyed, 49 percent, disapproving of his performance.

The latest survey finds Americans are almost evenly split on whether the Obama presidency is a success or a failure -- 47 percent to 45 percent. The poll of more than 1,600 registered voters was taken earlier this month.

The institute's assistant director, Peter Brown, said Mr. Obama's approval rating is trending higher, although he said it is not clear if it will remain an upward trend.

While the latest poll finds Mr. Obama's overall rating has improved, there is little change in the pattern of his support, with the strongest approval among groups who already have a history of giving him strong support. That includes women, blacks, Hispanics and members of the president's Democratic Party. Meanwhile, men, whites, Republican Party members and independent voters continue to disapprove of the president's performance.

A separate survey, released Wednesday, also indicates that Americans are looking at the president's performance more favorably.

The Associated Press-GfK survey finds 53 percent of Americans approve of the way the president is doing his job. That poll also shows voters are growing more confident that Mr. Obama and Republican lawmakers will be able to work together.

More than 1,000 voters took part in the survey, conducted between January 5 and January 10. It had a margin of effort of 4.2 percent.