President Barack Obama still has support from the majority of American people despite growing pessimism about the direction of the country.
From Yahoo.com News
Obama’s approval rating stands at 54 percent, roughly the same as in October but very different from the enthusiastic 74 percent in January just before he took office. And some 56 percent of people say the country is heading in the wrong direction, an uptick from 51 percent last month and 49 percent in Obama’s first month as president.
The economy is by far the most important issue on Americans’ minds. Unemployment hit 10.2 percent last month even though the administration has promoted glimmers of improvement and many economists say the recession is over.
Those jobless figures help explain why as many people said the economy got worse in the past month as said it got better — and it’s not many people who thought it got better, just 22 percent. Most say the economy stayed the same, and just 46 percent approve of how Obama is handling the economy, compared with 50 percent last month.
“He did good on getting Wall Street up and running. But I’m not going,” said independent Jay Huffaker, 33, of Knoxville, Tenn., a construction worker who has been unemployed for a year and a half. The country is in terrible shape, he said, adding, “It seems like it’s getting worse and worse and worse and worse.”
The nation also has grown more lukewarm on Obama and the wars as he tries to wind down the one in Iraq and considers ramping up the one in Afghanistan.
Compared with October, 45 percent of people now disapprove of Obama’s handling of Iraq, up from 37 percent; while 48 percent now disapprove of his handling of Afghanistan, up from 41 percent. A majority of Americans oppose both wars. And more than half — 54 percent — now oppose sending more troops to Afghanistan, an increase from 50 percent last month.
“We either need to do something to win the wars, or just come home,” said Republican Heather Johannessen, a stay-at-home mom in the suburbs of Minnesota’s Twin Cities, who thinks the U.S. is in a holding pattern in both Iraq and Afghanistan.