Rasmussen: Obama Job Approval At Highest Level In 15 Months

The night before the State Of The Union Address, Barack Obama is in a far better position than many people thought he'd be after November's election results.

On the eve of the State of the Union Address, there’s some good news for President Obama from the poll that has consistently shown him performing the worst:

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Monday shows that 31% of the nation’s voters Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as president. Thirty-five percent (35%) Strongly Disapprove, giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -4 (see trends).

That’s the president’s best Approval Index rating since February 1, 2010, nearly a full year ago. Strong Disapproval among Republicans is down to 55%. Among all voters, Strong Disapproval of the president has been consistently lower since mid-December.

The Presidential Approval Index is calculated by subtracting the number who Strongly Disapprove from the number who Strongly Approve.

This “Approval Index” is a metric of Scott Rasmussen’s own invention that, quite honestly, seems to be of dubious value in telling us anything about the mood of the public as a whole. When you look at the raw numbers, though, you see where the good news really is:

Overall, 52% of voters say they at least somewhat approve of the president’s performance. That’s his highest level of total approval in fifteen months, since October 2009.  The president earns approval from 84% of Democrats and 48% of unaffiliated voters. Among all voters, 47% disapprove.

This is clearly a reflection of the same post lame duck, post Arizona, bump in the polls that the President has gotten over the past month or so and, as we head into the State of the Union tomorrow, it’s as good a time as any to see where we are today overall:

And this is before the State of the Union, which typically results in at least a slight upward tick in poll numbers for any President. So, for a guy whose party suffered historic loses almost three months ago, I’d say that President Obama is in pretty good shape right now.

FILED UNDER: Public Opinion Polls, US Politics, , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. IP727 says:

    Enjoy that tingle down your leg, it won’t last long.

  2. tom p says:

    Doug, you commie pinko fascist socialist terrorist n****r lovin’ fag you…..

    May Sarah P b*tt f**k you up the….. with a ….

    Ahhhhhhh never mind, we all know what a liberal slut you are.

  3. michael reynolds says:

    I usually don’t bother with Obama polls because as you know it’s waaaay early.

    Also because poll numbers mean different things for different candidates. Obama’s numbers may rise or fall but people are still invested in his narrative. People like his story, and they want him to succeed. (Not the haters, obviously, but rational people.)

    He’s our living proof that the US has outgrown its past. People like him. He makes us feel good about our country. They want that narrative to be true. They want him to succeed. And because people like his narrative he’s always worth 5 points more than the polls show.

    He’s disappointed a lot of people by failing to perform impossible miracles. But he hasn’t violated that narrative. He’s still a smart, cool young black guy with a great family and an easy charm. People think his heart’s in the right place. And his greatest perceived weakness — his lack of combativeness — is seeming more attractive by the day.

    Anyone who counts this guy out is a fool.

  4. anjin-san says:

    > Enjoy that tingle down your leg

    A new challenger for the “dumbest winger” throne…

  5. mantis says:

    There’s never a good reason to trust a Rasmussen poll.

  6. swift boater says:

    in Nov 2012 with gas closing in on $5 (only problem the first time was it went up to fast), Obamacare really starting to bite and unemployment only under 10% because of all the discouraged workers who are no longer being counted in the official numbers I agree, he is a shoo-in.

  7. Steve Plunk says:

    MR is right. It’s too early for these polls to matter much for all candidates and potential candidates.

    I will say with rumors of another “stimulus” being floated at the SOTU address I don’t expect any bump afterward. Like the reduction in employee FICA contributions another stimulus will fail miserably if it’s like the previous one.

  8. Neil Hudelson says:


    Yeah, IP really hit the ground running. Do I detect a the same style as Athiest/Dem Hater?

    I think he may have just settled on a final name.

  9. G.A.Phillips says:

    Obama sucks!!!!!

  10. Steve Plunk says:

    IP struck a nerve. His pointing out Obama’s ability to always shine for some is spot on. It seems some get any news turned into good news and some get any news turned into bad news. This is really neither so those looking for a win need to look elsewhere. For a long time. Cause they ain’t comin’.

  11. anjin-san says:

    > This is really neither so those looking for a win need to look elsewhere.

    Guess you were out of the country during the lame duck session. And you missed the “we set back Iran’s nuke program years without killing anyone” thing. And the Dow approaching 12K thing. Kinda funny how investors seem to have confidence in the economy, ain’t it, chicken little?

  12. ponce says:

    Americans like bi-partisanship.

  13. floyd says:

    The poll means nothing, but…
    It would seem that the November election results would naturally improve Obama’s ratings.
    He is less of a threat to the country now. and he is pretending to move toward the center…
    ( until after the next election)

  14. floyd says:

    Geeesh! Micheal, that sounds like rapturous adoration!
    I take you like this guy huh?
    Watch that slobber, it could ruin your keyboard and that shiny new LCD monitor!

  15. ponce says:

    “It would seem that the November election results would naturally improve Obama’s ratings.”

    The markets are up quite nicely in Asia right now.

    If the trend continues around the globe the Dow will open above the 12,000 mark for the first time in quite a while.

    Americans like wealth and those they credit for delivering it to them.

  16. ponce says:

    To be precise, the Dow last opened above 12,000 on June 20, 2008.

  17. michael reynolds says:


    I do. I like the guy. He’s smart, decent, good-hearted. He’s all about the future of this country. All the things guys like you are not.

    As a bonus he’s a good family man. Ask me 20 years ago I’d have said that didn’t matter. I’ve changed my position on that.

    So, yep, he has frustrated me at times, disappointed me at times, but when the alternative is the hatred, gun worship, bullying and glorification of ignorance represented by the GOP, he’s my guy.

  18. anjin-san says:

    Here’s a hint Floyd. Guys who are not racked by insecurity are not afraid to express admiration for another guy. Guys who are not so sure of themselves find a hot, dumb chick and slobber over her…

  19. sam says:

    G.A.Phillips says:
    Monday, January 24, 2011 at 21:46

    Obama sucks!!!!!

    A couple of GA’s virtues are his lack of pretense and his ability to succinctly state the position of most of those who post here who don’t like the president. No lame, incoherent attempts at prediction (I think) for GA (“This is really neither so those looking for a win need to look elsewhere. For a long time. Cause they ain’t comin’.). No, our friend from cheeseland gets right to heart of the opposition’s mind set.

    If brevity is the soul of wit, GA’s .500 batting average is what you’d expect from him. But it’s an honest .500.

  20. floyd says:

    Your remark is vapid , stupid , and gratuitous.
    I made no allusion to sexual perversion. ESAD.

  21. anjin-san says:

    > I made no allusion to sexual perversion.

    Did I say you did? Where did I do that? I just kind of held a mirror up in front of your remarks. If you can’t take the heat, stay out of the kitchen. You are the one talking about slobbering over guys an adoring them. Someone made some nice remarks about Obama and your response was a cheap shot. Go to amazon.com and see if you can order up a little class…

  22. floyd says:

    After spending time in your “kitchen”, I think it is the “dining room” which is to be avoided!(lol)

  23. anjin-san says:

    > I think it is the “dining room” which is to be avoided!

    Then you miss out on some pretty good zen vegetarian cuisine 🙂