The results of a recent poll gave more bad news for President Obama and Senate Democrats in the upcoming mid-term election.
The latest Allstate/National Journal Heartland Monitor poll, conducted from April 9-13, 2014, showed the President’s overall approval rating at just 41 percent. That’s near the lowest level ever recorded in the 20 Heartland Monitor polls taken since 2009.
Traditionally, voters’ attitudes toward the incumbent President play a bigger role than those towards Congress to shape the results of mid-term elections. And these attitudes towards Obama and the nation’s direction remain somewhat chilly.
27 percent of those polled believed the country was going in the right direction, while 62 percent said the country was going in the wrong direction. However, there’s still a big racial gap on this question. 41 percent of minorities said the country is moving in the right direction, while only 22 percent of whites believed this was the case. Among whites without a college degree, only about 1 in 6 thought the country was going in the right direction, about half the share of whites with a college degree.
This number is significant because in seven states where Democratic Senators are defending their seats – Alaska, Arkansas, Louisiana, Montana, North Carolina, South Dakota and West Virginia – older whites and whites without a college degree represent a substantial share of the electorate.
Only one in four adults (25 percent) agreed that the President’s actions have increased economic opportunity for people like them, 46 percent believed his actions would diminish their opportunities, and 23 percent said they didn’t think his actions would affect their economic opportunities.
It’s not the just the percentage of disapproval that should worry Senate Democrats, but the intensity of that disapproval. The share of adults who strongly disapprove of the President’s performance (39 percent) is nearly double the share of those who strongly approve (21 percent).
While there could be an exception or two, this poll reinforces the belief that the mid-term elections will be a referendum on President Obama and ObamaCare.