Nile Gardiner, political reporter, analyst, and commentator, summarizes the bad news for President Obama in Britain’s Telegraph: The just-released Washington Post/ABC News poll contains shocking news for the Easter weekend. Headlined on the front page, “Economy is Battering Obama in the Polls,” the Post/ABC poll indicates “deep-seated public unease” over the president’s handling of the economy, the number one issue for U.S. voters. A Gallup survey, too, revealed the lowest-ever approval ratings (41 percent) for President Obama. Worse, RealClear Politics notes the president’s disapproval rating is nearing 50 percent.
The president should be worried; he should be very worried. Experts agree that the public’s view of the economy drives their votes on Election Day. As 2012 nears, 44 percent of Americans view the economy as “getting worse” — the highest percentage in two years, and they blame Obama. Americans are especially feeling the pinch at the gas pump; 78 percent see inflation getting worse, and 71 percent say gasoline prices are creating a hardship for their family.
To add to the president’s concerns, just 28 percent of Americans now say they will “definitely vote” for his re-election in 2012, compared to a far larger 45 percent who “definitely will not.” In addition, conservative voters now outnumber liberals (36 percent to 21 percent). Gardiner notes a number of non-statistical factors that are also not going well for the president. His speech last week on the budget deficit bombed, and the credit rating agency, Standard and Poor, voted no confidence in the U.S. by downgrading its outlook for U.S. debt from “stable” to “negative.” Gardiner gave a grim assessment: the White House seems “out of its depth.” He concluded: “Barack Obama remains wedded to outdated Big Government, high tax solutions to economic problems, but the American people are clearly not impressed.”