Obama’s Legacy Likely to be as Polarizing as his Presidency

A recent national survey conducted by Quinnipiac University asked respondents who they considered as the best president of the past 70 years.  Two presidents rose to the top of the heap – Ronald Reagan (30%) and Barack Obama (29%).

Both Reagan’s and Obama’s support is buoyed by respondents from their respective political party.  In addition, Obama was the top pick among younger respondents, and among a majority of non-white respondents.  In contrast, Reagan was most popular among older and white respondents.

 

blog_image1

Reagan’s position as a top choice may be unsurprising considering his status as the GOP standard-bearer.  However, it is somewhat of a surprise to see Obama as the number two pick, as he had middling approval ratings throughout his eight years.  His position can likely be attributed to two major factors – recency bias and the early lower approval ratings of the Trump presidency.

Obama ended his term with an especially high approval rating (57% RCP average) compared to President Bush (29% RCP average).  On the contrary, President Trump’s approval rating has hit a low in record time.  This likely has created a sense of nostalgia for the Obama era in Democrats and younger voters – already.

Quinnipiac also asked respondents who they considered the worst president.  Obama’s presidency was as polarizing as any in recent memory, so it’s no shocker that he is also listed near the top as worst President:

 

blog_image2

A majority of Republicans list Obama as the worst president and choose Carter a distant second, whereas Democrats are split between Nixon and George W. Bush.

As was true throughout most of Obama’s term, he is viewed very favorably by most Democrats and very unfavorably by most Republicans.  It is too early to predict Obama’s legacy – will he be the Democrats’ gold standard (akin to Reagan), or will his popularity decline over time?  But it is not too early to say this: Obama’s legacy will be fascinating to follow.

Share on Facebook0Share on Google+0Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedIn0Email this to someone
Similar Articles

  • No Time to Rest on Our Laurels
    read more

  • Tinfoil Tuesday
    read more

  • Are Democrats headed toward a wave election?
    read more

  • What the Q1 CNBC Data Says About Tax Reform
    read more

  • First 100 Days Have Not Changed Voter Preference for Control of Congress
    read more

Public Opinion Strategies helped us to clarify what we wanted to learn and then conducted research and analysis that shed light even beyond the questions we set out to ask. They were very receptive to our suggestions, responsive to our queries, and flexible when we needed them to be.

Public Opinion Strategies has consistently offered unparalleled advice and spot-on polling that has shaped how and where we spent money and deploy key resources. Additionally, they have always been an excellent steward of limited campaign resources, ensuring we spend wisely and not a dollar more than necessary in order to get the information we need.

Robert Blizzard and Public Opinion Strategies did a great job for us throughout our successful campaign for Congress. Robert gave us accurate data, spot on analysis, and professional advice, all of which were essential to our victory.

Public Opinion Strategies is one of our go-to pollsters when it comes to testing public support for bond ballot measures and other initiative proposals. They are available to provide ongoing consultation with regard to crafting of ballot questions, public outreach messaging, and related efforts.

ACLI has worked with Public Opinion Strategies for decades, through several tough industry battles—often ones in which public opinion does not naturally fall on the side of insurers. Yet Bill and his team consistently provide invaluable strategic advice by refining our messages and helping us frame our issues in a way that makes them understandable and persuasive.

The data from Public Opinion Strategies provided important insight and informed our public awareness campaign. We sincerely appreciate their professionalism and expertise in this arena.

Nicole McCleskey and the team at Public Opinion Strategies have been invaluable to me, both during my campaigns and as Governor of the State of New Mexico. It’s not just the accuracy of their numbers, but guiding the overall strategy that makes them so valuable.

Public Opinion Strategies has been a part of our team in Missouri for more than a decade. With their data and guidance, Republicans here were able to attain a majority in the House in 2002 for the first time in fifty years, and we have been able to grow that majority to the point that we now have a record, veto-proof majority.

Lori Weigel from Public Opinion Strategies reviewed our needs and guided us toward asking the right questions. Her reporting was easy to follow and her interpretation of the data provided clear decision points.

In my tenure at two leading business associations, facing huge and complex consumer issues, I have benefitted enormously from the objective advisory skills of Bill and his team. They do their homework, they are rigorous, dispassionate and thoughtful. Turning questions into answers is a clever tag, but it’s also an apt description of the professional talents of the firm.

I consider Public Opinion Strategies to be a part of our team. That is the way we have always worked. They have helped us to understand our needs and fashioned research solutions to meet those needs. They have helped us to meet killer deadlines by being flexible, executing rapidly, and insuring quality. Teamwork is the best way to describe it.

Accuracy, speed, and deep knowledge of key issues and public sentiment are the hallmarks of quality opinion research, and on these measures Public Opinion Strategies consistently delivers. I have had the pleasure of working with Public Opinion Strategies for more than 15 years on dozens of issues, and they are undoubtedly the gold standard.

Public Opinion Strategies’ track record of success and wealth of experience in political campaigns and issue advocacy are why they are one of the most trusted and well respected public opinion firms in Washington, D.C. Their insights and perspectives have helped to inform a wide array of public affairs activities across multiple industries.