Entries in Favorability (10)


Gov. Chris Christie’s Favorability in New Jersey Is on the Rise

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, whose name is mentioned most often these days as a potential VP candidate on the Republican ticket, is gaining in popularity in his home state. A new Rutgers-Eagleton poll out Tuesday reveals he is more popular than he has ever been since taking office in January 2010.

Half of New Jersey voters say they have a favorable view of the veepstakes contender, up four percentage points since March. Garden State voters with an unfavorable opinion of Christie declined to 39 percent, while 11 percent have no opinion of the tough-talking governor. August of last year was the governor’s low point, with 47 percent viewing him unfavorably and 45 percent favorably.

More good news from the latest poll: Just over half of voters now say New Jersey is going in the right direction, also up four points. Those who believe the state is going in the “wrong direction” remained at 40 percent in the survey while nine percent were unsure.

“After some weakening between November and March, Governor Christie’s favorability rating has rebounded to as positive as we’ve seen,” poll director David Redlawsk, a professor of political science at Rutgers, said in a statement. “Despite recent controversies over plans for Rutgers and less-than-positive economic news, voters are trending toward more positive ratings for the governor and the state. But more improvement will probably require more voters to think things are getting better, not just standing still.”

Despite some back and forth on whether he is interested in the job, Christie has said he’s “not looking to become vice president.” But he also said the presumptive GOP nominee “might be able to convince me.”  However, the better Christie polls in his state, the less likely he is to want to join the ticket. With these poll numbers, his 2013 re-election battle could be an easy one.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Poll: First Lady, Ann Romney More Popular Than Their Husbands

Alex Wong/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Michelle Obama and Ann Romney outscore their husbands in personal popularity in the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll, while Hillary Clinton, for her part, has hit a new high in favorability data stretching back to her entry on the national stage 20 years ago.

Clinton and Obama both are far better known than Romney, helping boost them to much higher popularity ratings overall.  All three are rated unfavorably by roughly similar numbers: 24 percent for Obama, 27 percent for Clinton and 30 percent for Romney.

All told, Obama is seen favorably by 69 percent of the public and unfavorably by 24 percent -- not her best rating (76-16 percent in March 2009) but a broadly positive one.  Her favorability rating is 13 points higher than her husband’s; her unfavorable score, 16 points lower.

Romney’s rating is 40-30 percent favorable-unfavorable in this poll, produced for ABC by Langer Research Associates.  While much less positive than Obama’s, some of that has to do with Romney’s shorter time in the spotlight: 30 percent are undecided about her, compared with 7 percent undecided about Obama.

Romney, in any case, does better than her husband’s 35-47 percent rating last week.  She’s a scant 5 points higher than Mitt Romney in favorability, but a broader 17 points lower in unfavorable ratings.  As noted last week, Mitt Romney’s basic popularity ratings are the weakest for any presumptive presidential nominee in ABC/Post polls during primary seasons since 1984.

Clinton’s ratings are much like Obama’s -- 65-27 percent favorable-unfavorable, a numerical high for Clinton by a single point.  That reflects a turnaround from the 2008 presidential campaign, in which she lost the Democratic nomination to Barack Obama.  At this time four years ago, she was seen unfavorably by 54 percent of Americans, favorably by 44 percent.

Clinton likely is boosted by her current position: As secretary of state, she’s prominent as a representative of U.S. interests and concerns overseas, without engaging in the controversial to-and-fro of domestic politics.  Note too that her husband, also largely outside the fray of domestic politics these days, had an equally positive 67-29 percent favorable-unfavorable rating in a Pew poll last month, much like his wife’s, and also like Michelle Obama’s, today.

There are differences in intensity of sentiment.  Michelle Obama is viewed strongly favorably by 38 percent of Americans, strongly unfavorably by 12 percent.  Hillary Clinton’s ratings are 33 percent strongly positive vs. 13 percent strongly negative.  Intensity of views on Ann Romney are evenly divided: 11 percent strongly favorable, 13 percent strongly unfavorable.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


A Record Shortfall in Personal Popularity Challenges Romney in the Race Ahead

ABC/ Ida Mae Astute(WASHINGTON) -- Mitt Romney has emerged from the Republican primary season with the weakest favorability rating on record for a presumptive presidential nominee in ABC News/Washington Post polls since 1984, trailing a resurgent Barack Obama in personal popularity by 21 percentage points.

Thirty-five percent of Americans see Romney favorably, while 47 percent have an unfavorable opinion of the former Massachusetts governor. He's the first likely nominee to be underwater -- seen more unfavorably than favorably -- in ABC/Post polls in eight presidential primary seasons across the past 28 years.

Romney's gender gap in vote preferences in an ABC/Post poll last week -- he trailed Obama by 19 percentage points among women -- is reflected in his new favorability scores as well. Just 27 percent of women see Romney favorably, compared with 44 percent of men -- his lowest rating to date among women, and highest among men, in a dozen ABC/Post polls since September.

Obama, by contrast, has no such gap between the sexes; he's seen favorably by 56 percent of Americans overall, including 58 percent of women and 53 percent of men, surpassing Romney in both groups.

Romney's also got an enthusiasm gap: Just 12 percent see him "strongly" favorable, about half as many as see him strongly unfavorable. Intensity of sentiment on Obama is more even, tipping slightly to the positive -- 30 percent strongly favorable, 26 percent strongly unfavorable.

It's worth noting that favorability is not the same as voting preference -- i.e., poll questions asking people whom they'd support if the election were today. That construct is a hypothetical one; the election is not today. Ultimate voting decisions are based on a range of factors -- partisanship, policy preferences, perceptions of the candidates on policy and personal qualities alike. Personal favorability is one of the most basic measures among these.

Romney's ratings are a bit better among registered voters, 40-48 percent favorable-unfavorable, though still trail Obama's in this group, 54-43 percent. Nonetheless it's been a long rut for Romney; his favorability rating among all adults has remained between 31 and 39 percent steadily since fall, never yet cracking 40 percent. Its average across this time is 35 percent, exactly where it is today.

Still, Romney can point to previous turnarounds. His favorable score is just a whisker from the previous low, Bill Clinton's 37 percent in March 1992, in a race Clinton went on to win. But Clinton was damaged at the time by the Gennifer Flowers scandal and aided by soft ratings of the first President Bush, who was seen unfavorably by 47 percent, matching Romney's negative rating among all adults today.

Obama's not currently showing that kind of vulnerability: His overall 56 percent favorability rating is his most positive in nearly two years; 40 percent rate him unfavorably. Obama's favorable score has gained 9 points since September, and his unfavorable rating has dropped by 6, as economic gains lifted consumer sentiment out of its longest, deepest downturn in decades.

If Romney can improve, Obama can stumble. His favorability rating was nearly matched by John Kerry's at about this point in 2004 and Mike Dukakis' in 1988 -- yet both faded and went on to lose. On the other hand, Obama's rating now also was approximately matched by two incumbents who went on to win re-election, Ronald Reagan in 1984 and Clinton in 1996.

One bit of Romney's baggage is the public's negative assessment of the nominating process from which he's emerging. Thirty-two percent of Americans rate "the Republican primaries" as a whole favorably; 56 percent, unfavorably.

These views have arisen in the midst of two dynamics -- one, the contentious Republican primaries, the other, improving public ratings of economic conditions. The former are all but over, a change that should be welcome for Romney. The latter remains to be seen -- with the economy's direction as critical in the six months ahead as it's been in the six just past.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Unfavorable Views of Obama Reach Highest Levels Yet; Gingrich Still Trails

Kevin Lamarque-Pool/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Unfavorable views of President Obama inched to their highest level of his presidency in the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll, but he’s still more popular than his front-running potential Republican challenger, Newt Gingrich.

Forty-nine percent of Americans now express an unfavorable opinion of Obama, while 48 percent view him favorably, marking the first time his negative number has exceeded his positive one in this most basic measure of personal popularity. Obama’s favorable rating has plummeted by 31 points from his career high of 79 percent days before he took office.

Gingrich is further underwater, with an unfavorable rating that’s essentially the same as Obama’s -- 48 percent -- but a favorable score that’s 13 points lower, 35 percent.  Moreover, while just 23 percent see Obama “strongly” favorably, Gingrich’s core group of strong supporters is just half as large, 12 percent.

Since Gingrich surged in support for the GOP presidential nomination, this poll, produced for ABC News by Langer Research Associates, finds that his favorable rating in his own party is unchanged from late last month -- at 60 percent -- and he’s actually grown more unpopular among independents and Democrats alike.

The net result: No change in his favorable score, but a six point rise in the number of Americans who see him unfavorably.  That includes a slight 10 point rise in his unfavorable rating from “very conservative” Americans, from 21 percent last month to 31 percent now.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Poll: Gingrich, Romney Outstrip Paul in Popularity Within the GOP

Ethan Miller/Jessica McGowan/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney are maintaining broad popularity in the Republican Party, both far outstripping GOP rival Ron Paul in basic favorability.  But among independents -- crucial swing voters in the general election -- the advantage is Romney’s.

The latest ABC News/Washington Post poll finds that all three have challenges in the perception of the general public.  Gingrich remains underwater in basic favorability, with more Americans seeing him unfavorably than favorably.  Romney gets no better than an even split on this measure; Paul, roughly the same.

Nonetheless, this poll, produced for ABC by Langer Research Associates, finds that Romney’s favorability rating has advanced by 13 points among independents since mid-October -- 45 percent now see him favorably, 30 percent unfavorably.  That’s improved from a more negative 32-36 percent split on Romney among independents a month and a half ago.  Romney’s gained ground among very conservative potential GOP voters as well.

Gingrich, for his part, also has gained slightly among independents, up by 7 points in favorability from mid-November, to 36 percent.  But more independents continue to view him unfavorably than favorably, essentially unchanged at 43 percent.

Paul, for his part, has gained 11 points in favorable ratings among independents since earlier this fall, to 38 percent, but also has seen his unfavorable score in this group rise by 9 points, to 34 percent.  He’s become better known among independents, but not better liked.

Paul’s more immediate concern is in his own party.  Republicans only divide, 39-34 percent, in favorable vs. unfavorable views of the libertarian former Congressman.  His favorable score is unchanged from the last ABC/Post measurement in mid-September.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Poll: Americans Love Turkeys for Dinner, Not the Ones in Congress

iStockPhoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Ninety-three percent of Americans express a favorable opinion of Thanksgiving dinner, according to the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll.  But in Washington, by contrast, nothing’s cooking: favorable ratings of the U.S. Congress are 70 percentage points lower.

Yet, while just 23 percent of Americans see Congress as a whole favorably, substantially more -- 41 percent -- express a favorable impression of their own representative.

So glum is the public’s political mood that it’s perhaps encouraging to see the warm welcome still afforded to the venerable tradition of Thanksgiving dinner.  Not only do nine in 10 see it favorably, 77 percent of Americans have “strongly” positive impressions of this particular upcoming meal.  Seven percent in this poll, produced for ABC by Langer Research Associates, see Thanksgiving dinner unfavorably.

For Congress, “favorable” ratings are a bit less harsh than job approval; in an ABC/Post poll last month a record low 14 percent of Americans approved of the way the Congress is doing its job.  In this survey, by contrast, 23 percent see Congress favorably overall, indicating that it gets a little more credit for effort than for performance.  But not much: Not only do 69 percent of respondents see Congress unfavorably, a plurality -- 44 percent -- feels that way strongly.

Moreover, while favorability of Congress hasn’t been asked often, this reading hits a new low compared with four previous surveys dating to 1986.

Unfavorable views of Congress peak in some particular groups, soaring, most notably, to 81 percent among conservative Republicans and among very conservative Americans.  Negative views of Congress also are 20 points higher among whites than among non-whites, 12 points higher among Americans 50 and older than among those younger than 50, and 8 points higher among men than among women.

Republicans are a slight 7 points more apt than Democrats to express an unfavorable view of Congress overall.  When rating their own representative, though, 51 percent of Republicans give a favorable report, vs. 43 percent of Democrats and just 34 percent of independents.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Seven in 10 See Wall Street Negatively, with Dems Leading the Way

Ben Hider/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Seven in 10 Americans have an unfavorable impression of the financial institutions on Wall Street, a point of resonance with the protesters camped out in Lower Manhattan and elsewhere.

But while that sentiment is broadly shared, its intensity rests heavily on political partisanship.

Groups such as Democrats and liberals express the most negative views of Wall Street in this ABC News/Washington Post poll.  Conservatives and Republicans are less apt to slam the brokers and bankers, and more likely to direct their ire at the federal government.

Given this partisan and ideological cast, the results make the Occupy Wall Street movement seem like an expression on the Left, of the same kind of frustration voiced by the Tea Party movement on the right. Simply put, one group rails against big business, and the other is critical of big government.

Overall, this poll, produced for ABC News by Langer Research Associates, finds that 70 percent of Americans see Wall Street unfavorably, and essentially as many -- 68 percent -- hold an unfavorable opinion of the government in Washington.

Negative views of Wall Street soar to 84 percent among liberal Democrats, versus 59 percent among conservative Republicans.  Negative views of the government in Washington, meanwhile, reach 89 percent among conservative Republicans, versus 57 percent among liberal Democrats.

Sharp differences also appear in intensity of sentiment.  Fifty-six percent of liberal Democrats have a “strongly” negative opinion of Wall Street, as opposed to 32 percent of conservative Republicans.  By contrast, 69 percent of conservative Republicans have a strongly negative view of the federal government, compared with 32 percent of liberal Democrats.

Partisanship isn’t the only factor in views of Wall Street.  It’s rated more negatively by better-off Americans, and more strongly negatively by those approaching retirement age, two groups that may have been particularly exposed to the market’s troubles.

Among Americans age 50 to 64, 55 percent have a strongly unfavorable view of Wall Street institutions, markedly higher than among other age groups.  And overall negative views rise from 66 percent in less-than $50,000 households to 78 percent among those who are better off.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Poll: Obama’s Favorability Slips; Perry, Romney Do No Better

The White House/Pete Souza(NEW YORK) -- President Obama’s basic popularity has slipped to its lowest of his presidency, but his top two Republican challengers -- Rick Perry and Mitt Romney -- are no better off.

The latest ABC News/Washington Post poll, produced for ABC News by Langer Research Associates, found that 47 percent of Americans see Obama favorably overall.  That percentage is fewer than half for the first time in ABC/Post polling since Obama announced his candidacy in February 2007 and down dramatically from his peak -- 79 percent -- days before he took office in January 2009.   Essentially, as many adults -- 46 percent -- now also see Obama unfavorably.

Perry, the Texas governor and Republican presidential candidate, has hurdles of his own.  Thirty-one percent of Americans have an unfavorable opinion of Perry overall, exceeding the 23 percent who see him favorably.  That’s marked by a shortfall in the political center: Independents see him more unfavorably than favorably by a 13-point margin.

Customarily, it’s a troubling sign for a political figure’s unfavorable rating to exceed his or her favorable score.  What helps Perry is the very large number of adults -- 46 percent -- who’ve yet to form an opinion of him one way or the other.  Perry also has an advantage in the Republican base -- greater strength of support than Romney’s among conservative Republicans and among Americans who call themselves “very” conservative.

Romney, for his part, has a 33-31 percent favorable-unfavorable rating, splitting the country much as Obama does.  Thirty-seven percent have yet to form an opinion of Romney, despite his unsuccessful campaign for the GOP presidential nomination four years ago.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Buyer’s Remorse? Clinton’s Popularity Waxes as Obama’s Wanes

U.S. Department of State(NEW YORK) -- There's a growing case of presidential buyer’s remorse for some Americans, according to a new Bloomberg National Poll.

Back in July when Bloomberg’s poll asked whether the country would be better off under a President Hillary Clinton, only a quarter of those polled said yes.  That number has jumped to a third -- 34 percent -- in a poll out Friday.

While a growing number of people say things would have been better under Clinton, more -- 47 percent -- told Bloomberg things would be about the same under Clinton as they are under Obama.

Two-thirds of Americans show a favorable view of Clinton, according to the poll and Bloomberg calls her the “most popular national political figure in America.”

The poll shows a job approval rating for President Obama of 45 percent, the lowest of his presidency.

Former Vice President Dick Cheney suggested to ABC News’ Jonathan Karl recently that perhaps Clinton should challenge Obama for the Democratic nomination in 2012.

Asked by CNN what the chances are she would challenge the president -- her boss -- for his job, Clinton said “below zero.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Poll: Sarah Palin’s Favorability Declines Among Republicans

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Favorable impressions of Sarah Palin have dropped to a new low in her own party, with negative views of the former Alaska governor substantially exceeding those of other potential Republican presidential candidates, the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll finds.

Fifty-eight percent of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents see Palin favorably, in the top league with Mike Huckabee (61 percent), Mitt Romney (60 percent) and Newt Gingrich (55 percent).  But on the flipside, she’s weaker: Thirty-seven percent see Palin unfavorably, exceeding Gingrich’s unfavorable rating by 11 points, Romney’s by 16 and Huckabee’s by 19.

Palin also is following a different trajectory.  She peaked at a remarkable 88 percent favorable among Republicans and Republican-leaning independents -- known collectively as “leaned Republicans” -- after stepping onto the national stage as John McCain’s vice-presidential running mate in September 2008.  That’s declined since then to today’s level, 30 points lower.

Romney, by contrast, is at a new high in favorability in ABC/Post polls, while Huckabee is off his peak by an insignificant three points and Gingrich is at about his average in polls back to the mid-1990s.

Another difference is that almost everyone has an opinion of Palin: just five percent of Republicans haven’t made up their minds about her in terms of favorability, the most basic measure of a public figure’s popularity.  More, about two in 10, have no opinion of Hucakbee, Romney and Gingrich in the poll, produced for ABC News by Langer Research Associates.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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