NPR Shocker: Waning Support for President, Obamacare and Dems

NPR on Wednesday released results of a new poll finding declining support for President Obama and his healthcare initiative while also showing a tightening in which Party folks plan to vote for in the 2010 elections.

Also of note was the glaring difference between those believing the country is going in the wrong track versus the right track with those feeling the former exceeding the latter by a greater margin than has been seen in over a year, and the highest since the financial collapse last September. 

Though none of this is surprising given other polling data of late, it is interesting to see this coming from NPR.

The results were published in an online article as well as discussed on Wednesday's Morning Edition (audio embedded below the fold, h/t Soren Dayton):

Poll respondents liked a Democratic statement on solving health care problems better than a Republican statement (51 percent to 42 percent). However, when asked about the plan now moving through Congress, a plurality of 47 percent was opposed and 42 percent said they were in favor, based on what they had heard about the plan so far.

In another part of the poll, respondents were asked which of two statements on the economy came closer to expressing their view. The first statement: "President Obama's economic policies helped avert an even worse crisis and are laying the foundation for our eventual economic recovery." The second statement: "President Obama's economic policies have run up a record federal deficit while failing to end the recession or slow the record pace of job losses." A plurality preferred the second statement, 48 percent to 45 percent. A majority on both sides said they agreed strongly (2 to 1 among those preferring the first statement; 3 to 1 among those preferring the second). [...]

The so-called generic ballot question was also very close. Asked whether they would support a Democrat or a Republican for Congress in 2010 if the election were held today, 42 percent said they would choose a Democrat and 43 percent a Republican, a difference well within the poll's margin of error (plus or minus 3.4 percentage points for each number in each question).

The poll was conducted by Democrat Stan Greenberg of the firm Greenberg Quinlan Rosner and Republican Glen Bolger of Public Opinion Strategies.

Greenberg and Bolger found that 38 percent considered the country to be going in the "right direction," while 54 percent saw it on the "wrong track." But that 15-point negative reading was the least negative of any NPR poll in more than year. The portion saying "wrong track" had been nearly 90 percent in the NPR poll done in the fall of 2008.

The principal reason for negativity appeared to be the economy. Asked to assess the current state of the economy, 49 percent called it poor while 42 percent opted for "not so good." Only 8 percent said it was good and only 1 percent said excellent.

Asked to choose the issue they thought the president and Congress should pay attention to most, 39 percent said the economy. Health care, the president's top domestic agenda item, was cited by 12 percent. These were followed by "taxes and spending" (8 percent), "terrorism and national security" (6 percent) and the federal deficit (6 percent). 

Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard, Associate Editor of NewsBusters, passed away in March of 2014.