ChrisWeigant.com

Obama Poll Watch -- August, 2014

[ Posted Thursday, September 11th, 2014 – 16:04 PDT ]

A mixed month

First, a program note is in order. This column is woefully late, I realize. I was on vacation for the first week of the month, and then the backlog of important issues demanded my attention earlier this week. Also, since September is already one-third over, I am not going to offer up many predictions at the end of the column, since I feel it would be cheating when I've got data to look at that I normally wouldn't. Also, because I am feeling lazy. All in all, what this means is that it's going to be a very short column this month, so my apologies. We'll be back on our normal schedule next month, I promise.

OK, with that out of the way, let's take a look at how President Obama did in job approval polling last month. The results were mixed, but overall fairly positive. Here's the new chart:

Obama Approval -- August 2014

[Click on graph to see larger-scale version.]

August, 2014

August wasn't as dominated by congressional bickering, due to their taking the entire month off. The situation with children at the border eased considerably, which also drove it off the front pages and the headline news. The situations in both Ukraine and Israel had their ups and downs, but both seem to be calming down considerably -- a welcome relief.

Countering these trends, however, was the worsening situation in Iraq and Syria. The beheading of American journalists provoked a sharp response among the American public (as it was, no doubt, designed to do), and the country awoke from its "war-weary" phase to begin a wave of support for military action. Obama began airstrikes against the Islamic State (or ISIS, or ISIL) but on a limited basis. A humanitarian crisis was averted on a mountaintop, and the most important dam in Iraq was taken back from the terrorist group. The Kurds began turning the tide against the Islamic State, to the point where they were not taking new territory but actually beginning to lose ground (albeit, very slowly). Overall, it was a mixed month news-wise.

This was reflected in Obama's approval ratings. His monthly average job approval rating essentially stayed the same at 41.6 percent, falling only 0.2 percent in August (after falling 1.6 percent in June and 0.6 percent in July). But his disapproval rating showed a surprising turnaround in August, improving 0.6 percent to finish the month at 53.0 percent.

 

Overall Trends

Again, this is going to be a truncated view of the trends, due to the lateness of this column. President Obama's job approval stayed extremely flat in August, which bucks the general trend of Obama having pretty horrible Augusts in past years (except during his second election). Take a look at the data for past Augusts: 2009 -- 3.6 percent drop; 2010 -- 1.3 down; 2011 -- 2.4 down; 2012 -- 0.6 up; 2013 -- 0.9 down. Seen in that light, a 0.2 percent downturn isn't all that bad.

What it really represented was a flattening out of Obama's job approval, perhaps a "bottoming out" floor from which he will rise. He certainly is scraping the bottom of his own record, since he is now only 0.2 percent above the worst-ever job approval he has charted (in November of last year, during the Obamacare website disaster). In daily averages, Obama started the month at 41.6, fell briefly to 41.0 early on and then rose to 42.1 towards the end of the month. This represents movement of only 1.1 percent for the whole month -- which is an incredibly low range of movement.

The big surprise was Obama's gains in the job disapproval rating. For the month, Obama improved more than half a percent to end with a monthly average job disapproval rating of 53.0 percent, down from 53.6 percent in July. In the past two months, this number has risen 1.7 percent (June) and 0.2 percent (July), so this could signify a turnaround. The daily disapproval averages seem to reflect this as well. Obama started the month at 55.3 percent, then steadily fell to hit 51.9 percent and he finished the month at 52.0 percent. That is a lot of movement -- a range of 3.4 percent -- and the trendline was clearly in Obama's favor all month long. Obama picked up most of these gains from moving people from "disapprove" to "undecided" though. The undecided category rose to 5.4 percent (from 4.6 percent), after a very long time in the mid-to-low 4-percent range (from 4.2 to about 4.6 percent, since last December). The undecided category hasn't been this high since last August, in fact.

Overall, Obama improved the gap between approval and disapproval by 0.4 percent. This is the first such gain since May, but it still leaves him 11.4 percent "underwater," and it still leaves him with a very low approval rating heading into a congressional election season. We'll see whether Obama can improve further -- and, crucially, begin turning his approval trend around -- next month.

 

[Obama Poll Watch Data:]

Sources And Methodology

ObamaPollWatch.com is an admittedly amateur effort, but we do try to stay professional when it comes to revealing our sources and methodology. All our source data comes from RealClearPolitics.com; specifically from their daily presidential approval ratings "poll of polls" graphic page. We take their daily numbers, log them, and then average each month's data into a single number -- which is then shown on our monthly charts here (a "poll of polls of polls," if you will...). You can read a much-more detailed explanation of our source data and methodology on our "About Obama Poll Watch" page, if you're interested.

Questions or comments? Use the Email Chris page to drop me a private note.

 

Obama's Second Term Statistical Records

Monthly
Highest Monthly Approval -- 1/13 -- 52.7%
Lowest Monthly Approval -- 11/13 -- 41.4%

Highest Monthly Disapproval -- 12/13 -- 54.0%
Lowest Monthly Disapproval -- 1/13 -- 42.6%

Daily
Highest Daily Approval -- 1/31/13 -- 52.5%
Lowest Daily Approval -- 12/2/13 -- 39.8%

Highest Daily Disapproval -- 12/2/13 -- 55.9%
Lowest Daily Disapproval -- 2/24/13 -- 42.3%

 

Obama's Second Term Raw Monthly Data

[All-time high in bold, all-time low underlined.]

Month -- (Approval / Disapproval / Undecided)
08/14 -- 41.6 / 53.0 / 5.4
07/14 -- 41.8 / 53.6 / 4.6
06/14 -- 42.4 / 53.4 / 4.2
05/14 -- 44.0 / 51.7 / 4.3
04/14 -- 43.4 / 52.1 / 4.5
03/14 -- 42.9 / 52.8 / 4.3
02/14 -- 43.3 / 52.3 / 4.4
01/14 -- 42.7 / 52.7 / 4.6
12/13 -- 41.9 / 54.0 / 4.1
11/13 -- 41.4 / 53.9 / 4.7
10/13 -- 44.2 / 50.8 / 5.0
09/13 -- 43.9 / 50.8 / 5.3
08/13 -- 44.4 / 50.2 / 5.4
07/13 -- 45.3 / 49.2 / 5.5
06/13 -- 46.5 / 48.5 / 5.0
05/13 -- 48.3 / 46.9 / 4.8
04/13 -- 48.6 / 46.8 / 4.6
03/13 -- 48.5 / 46.3 / 5.2
02/13 -- 51.1 / 43.0 / 5.9
01/13 -- 52.7 / 42.6 / 4.7

 

Second Term Column Archives

[Jul 14], [Jun 14], [May 14], [Apr 14], [Mar 14], [Feb 14], [Jan 14], Dec 13], [Nov 13], [Oct 13], Sep 13], [Aug 13], [Jul 13], [Jun 13], [May 13], [Apr 13], [Mar 13], [Feb 13], [Jan 13]

 

First Term Data

To save space, the only data and statistics listed above are from Obama's second term. If you'd like to see the data and stats from Obama's first term, including a list of links to the full archives of the Obama Poll Watch column for the first term, we've set up an Obama Poll Watch First Term Data page, for those still interested.

 

-- Chris Weigant

 

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

15 Comments on “Obama Poll Watch -- August, 2014”

  1. [1] 
    Michale wrote:

    Across the board, Obama is losing ground..

    Women, Hispanics, etc etc...

    Obama losing the confidence of key parts of the coalition that elected him
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/obama-losing-the-confidence-of-key-parts-of-the-coalition-that-elected-him/2014/09/11/18a1c2da-391b-11e4-bdfb-de4104544a37_story.html

    What's it going to take for ya'all to admit that Obama is not the messiah ya'all think he is???

    Michale

  2. [2] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    What's it going to take for ya'all to admit that Obama is not the messiah ya'all think he is???

    Well, I'll be happy enough to know what it will take to stop YOU from asking incredibly stupid and wholly non-serious questions.

    S E R I O U S L Y !

  3. [3] 
    Michale wrote:

    Well, I'll be happy enough to know what it will take to stop YOU from asking incredibly stupid and wholly non-serious questions.

    It's a VERY serious question..

    JL is on record as taking Obama to task for his bonehead Education moves..

    You have joined the ranks of the realistic people by thumping Obama for his bonehead Foreign Policy moves..

    But everyone else is of the firm opinion that Obama can do no wrong.. Despite ALL the evidence to the contrary..

    So, the question is a serious one.. But I will add a clarification..

    For those who believe Obama is the second coming, what's it going to take for ya'all to admit that Obama is NOT the messiah??

    Better??? :D

    As I mentioned to CW in a previous commentary, if I don't speak out against the emperor's nekkid-ness, no one else would...

    And Weigantia would just be another echo chamber where Obama is all goodness and light.. Uh huh.. Ditto.. You said it man!! Obama is awesome etc etc etc ad nasuem..

    SOMEONE has got to keep Weigantians rooted in SOME semblance of reality.. Since no one seems to be inclined to step up, it might as well be me... :D

    Michale

  4. [4] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I have long been afraid that Weigantia is in danger of becoming something as uninteresting as your idea of an echo chamber. You don't see it, Michale, but, you are largely responsible for it.

  5. [5] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    So, the question is a serious one.. But I will add a clarification...For those who believe Obama is the second coming, what's it going to take for ya'all to admit that Obama is NOT the messiah??

    Better??? :D

    Nominally.

  6. [6] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    So, the question is a serious one.. But I will add a clarification..

    For those who believe Obama is the second coming, what's it going to take for ya'all to admit that Obama is NOT the messiah??

    Better??? :D

    Nominally.

  7. [7] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    So, the question is a serious one.. But I will add a clarification..

    For those who believe Obama is the second coming, what's it going to take for ya'all to admit that Obama is NOT the messiah??

    Better??? :D

    Nominally.

  8. [8] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    There, that's better. :)

  9. [9] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Let me put it this way, Michale ...

    The tenor of discussion around here would rise to a much higher level of seriousness if you would dispense with your mind-numbing habit of assuming everyone here is incapable of critical thinking or of constructive criticism - of Obama administration policies or of anything else.

    Perhaps, if you were able to refrain from continuously making false assumptions about people who comment here and from always lumping everyone here as a group living outside the realm of reality, then we might see more interesting and productive discussion about some very critical issues, including constructive criticism of President Obama and his administration's policies.

  10. [10] 
    Michale wrote:

    The tenor of discussion around here would rise to a much higher level of seriousness if you would dispense with your mind-numbing habit of assuming everyone here is incapable of critical thinking or of constructive criticism - of Obama administration policies or of anything else.

    I would be happy to do so if I saw any evidence that most are capable of critical thinking or constructive criticism of Obama administration policies.

    You and I are a perfect example.. You HAVE been critical of Obama administration policies which is why we can carry on fascinating and rational discussions...

    JL is another example...

    But most everyone else starts from the premise, "Everything Obama does with regards to police is goodness and light" and debates from THAT assumption..

    This amnesty for 5-6 million illegals is a perfect example..

    On what planet is it logical whereas a government can dump 5-6 million new workers into a job pool that sees unemployment at over 11% and expect good things to happen??

    Perhaps, if you were able to refrain from continuously making false assumptions about people who comment here and from always lumping everyone here as a group living outside the realm of reality, then we might see more interesting and productive discussion about some very critical issues, including constructive criticism of President Obama and his administration's policies.

    But that's just it..

    My assumptions AREN'T false... Within the few exceptions outlined, my assumptions are dead on ballz accurate, as my previous Amnesty For Illegals demonstrates..

    I have saids it befores and I'll says it agains...

    If people want me to be LESS critical of Obama, then they need to be MORE critical of Obama..

    That way, balance is maintained.. :D

    Michale

  11. [11] 
    Michale wrote:

    You don't see it, Michale, but, you are largely responsible for it.

    What's happening here in Wegantia has less to do with me and more to do with the fact that Obama's approval numbers are underwater and have been for quite some time..

    In other words, everything I have been saying about Obama has been proven right and the vast majority of Weigantians don't have the heart (or the facts) to argue.. :D

    Michale

  12. [12] 
    Michale wrote:

    In other words, everything I have been saying about Obama has been proven right and the vast majority of Weigantians don't have the heart (or the facts) to argue.. :D

    To be accurate let me amend that to say that MOST everything I have been saying about Obama has been proven right...

    :D

    Michale

  13. [13] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    Mad props LizM.

    "So, if this show teach you anything, it should teach you how to respek everyone: animals, children, bitches, spazmos, mingers, lezzers, fatty boombahs, and even gaylords. So, to all you lot watching this, but mainly to the normal people, respek. West side." - Ali G

  14. [14] 
    Michale wrote:

    "So, if this show teach you anything, it should teach you how to respek everyone: animals, children, bitches, spazmos, mingers, lezzers, fatty boombahs, and even gaylords. So, to all you lot watching this, but mainly to the normal people, respek. West side." - Ali G

    "Dogs barking can't fly home without umbrella"
    -Jumpin' Jack Flash

    :D

  15. [15] 
    Michale wrote:

    Hay CW,

    Back in the immigration debate, you had stated that illegals won't be allowed to vote...

    http://denver.cbslocal.com/2014/09/12/524-non-citizens-received-regular-colorado-drivers-licenses-dmv-says/

    Apparently, 524 can now vote in Colorado, a tight race for Democrats...

    Well, that tight race just got a boost with 524 Dem votes that are illegal..

    Michale

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