Local Politics

Poll: Obama gets mixed reviews

Posted April 24, 2009 11:10 a.m. EDT

— North and South Carolina residents give mixed reviews to President Barack Obama's performance in his first 100 days in office, according to a poll released Friday.

The Elon University Poll surveyed 662 residents in the Carolinas between Sunday and Thursday and found 52 percent approve of how Obama is handling his job. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.9 percentage points.

Half of those surveyed, however, said the president was trying to tackle too many issues at once, while 39 percent said he was focused on the right number of issues and 7 percent said he needed more on his plate.

Respondents were evenly split on their approval of Obama's handling of the economy, although 60 percent said they don't believe his economic policies have had enough time to take effect.

Only 17 percent of those surveyed said they think the economy has started to improve, while 35 percent said the worst is yet to come and the remainder said the economic downturn has leveled off but hasn't yet turned around.

“As the president struggles with the toughest first 100 days in recent history, his support may be beginning to wane as the public grows less patient and more divided over the direction of the country,” Hunter Bacot, director of the Elon University Poll, said in a statement.

Fifty-five percent of those surveyed disapprove of Obama's handling of the budget deficit and bolstering the auto industry – 56 percent said too much money has been invested in the auto industry – and close to 50 percent think he's mishandling the financial crisis, the mortgage crisis and taxes.

Meanwhile, the majority of respondents approved of his decisions regarding the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and half said they like his push for education reform.