Poll: Most Tennesseans disapprove of Obama

Wednesday, March 3, 2010 at 11:13am
Staff reports


Nearly as many Tennesseans now disapprove of the job President Obama is doing as approved of it a year ago, according to the latest statewide poll from Middle Tennessee State University.

Fifty-one percent of respondents said they object to the job Obama is doing as president. As well, a majority of those identifying themselves as independents now disapprove of Obama’s handling of the issues of the day, particularly the economy.

The poll, taken in mid-February, asked 634 residents about Obama’s major initiatives, from the economy and health care to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The majority of those polled said they lack confidence in the administration’s ability to right the economic ship and complete a health care reform package. But they expressed confidence in the administration’s ethical standards and foreign policy moves, saying Iraq was a mistake that seemed to be going well, while Afghanistan was a necessary war that does not seem to be progressing smoothly. Both of those overall majorities are slim, although only 35 percent of those polled are confident about health care reform.

Tennesseans were of mixed opinion on whether it is Obama or the Republican congressional minority throwing up roadblocks on major legislation in Washington. Their responses were dependent, in part, on where they get their news; for instance, those who watch the conservative Fox News Channel were more likely to blame the administration for the congestion on Capitol Hill.

The poll also found public uncertainty about the recent Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. FEC. The controversial decision extended free-speech rights to corporations, allowing companies to spend more directly in elections. Forty-seven percent of those polled disapprove, but 38 percent refused to answer the question or said they weren’t sure how to answer.

MTSU conducts the nonpartisan poll twice a year under faculty supervision. Students conduct the interviews. Click here to read the full results. 


34 Comments on this post:

By: EquinsuOcha on 3/3/10 at 11:01

more should not approve of hussein, but many can't admit they made the wrong choice for potus.....

By: shinestx on 3/3/10 at 11:24

Most Americans disapprove of B.O. too. Rasmussenreports.com (the most accurate polling org. of the past four federal elections) shows BO's approval sitting at 47, with an approval index of -14.

By: monaymonroe on 3/3/10 at 11:34

The poll is garbage. It only interviewed 634 people and it's assuming that most of TN disapproves of President Obama; there are 6,214,888, in TN. There is NO WAY 634 can represent over 6 million.

The bottom line is simple: Barack Obama is the President of the United States of America. Your approval is no longer necessary.

By: bonnieroo on 3/3/10 at 12:08

What a ridiculous "poll". 634 people do not represent MOST of an entire state of over 6 million people. Nobody asked me. I approve. It takes more than a year to clean up the mess made in the last eight but many can't admit they voted for the fool who made it.

By: vbscript2 on 3/3/10 at 12:56

I agree. This poll is obviously wrong. Far more than 51% of Tennesseans disapprove of Obama.

By: EquinsuOcha on 3/3/10 at 2:21

looks like it takes about a year to make things three times worse than those 8 years

By: NewYorker1 on 3/3/10 at 3:00

That's because most people who approve of Obama are educated. Need I say more?

By: Dragon on 3/3/10 at 3:36

Give him more time. I'm sure the number who disapprove will become an overwhelming majority.

By: shinestx on 3/3/10 at 3:44

Um, I think the NewYorker needs to educate him/herself. According to the Washington Post, the education attainment of Obama supporters in '08 were at both extremes of the spectrum. As such, he captured the so-called "over educated", those with more than college degrees. And those who did not graduate from high school. Among whites, McCain took more of those who did not graduate from high school (46 to 40), but because a larger portion of minorities have not graduated from high school, Obama took the prize among that group on a whole (67 to 28). Those with actual experience running businesses however, supported McCain (70 to 22). Remarkably, the education attainment of those who protested their votes by not voting at all (for a total of 8% of the electorate) with college degrees broke 5 to 1 in favor of McCain.

Furthermore, a recent poll by Rasmussen (the most accurate polling org of the last four federal elections) shows that the "over educated" are the most loyal of Obama supporters, but he has lost nearly 1/2 of those with college degrees who voted for him. I guess you could say that the "over educated" are slow learners. We all know the type, the ivory tower recluses who don't know reality if it slaps them in the face. They came out in droves last year. Of course, the minority vote remains solid (LOL, they're still supporting Governor Paterson of NY) for Obama.

By: shinestx on 3/3/10 at 3:46

That last sentence in the first ppg should read: "broke 5 to 1, GOP to Dem".

By: idgaf on 3/4/10 at 5:22

It would have been nice to see how the questions were worded.

Frankly I don't trust MTSU.

The problem is not with republicans it is with sane democrats who don't need one republican vote to pass anything they want to.

Saw an article yesterday that entitlements are more then revenue. Try running your house/family like that.

By: idgaf on 3/4/10 at 5:56

Obama / Palin

Darkness / Light
Lost / Grounded
Agnostic / Christian
Arrogant / Humble
Inexperience / Experienced
Big government / limited government
High taxes / low taxes
Big spender / saver
Ideologue / prudent
Phony / genuine
Liar / Honest
Godlike / Human
Foolish / Wise
Cold / Warm
Weak dollar / Strong dollar
High-brow / Middle class
Rich / Modest
Coward / Brave
Redistribution / Hard Work
Selfish / Selfless
Estranged / Girl next door
Talker / Doer
Vulnerable / Fearless
Preacher / Leader
Embarrassed about grades / Open about her grades
Controlling / Liberating
Death panels / Life
Does not trust us / Trusts us
Disdain for us / Loves us
Puppet / Arctic Fox
Teleprompter / original palm pilot
Smothering / Freedom
Depressing / Real Hope
Involuntary collectivism / voluntary charity
Child / adult
Smoker / Runner
Nancy-boy / gun owner
Self / Team
Excuses / Takes blame

Thought I would share this with you. Author unknown

By: house_of_pain on 3/4/10 at 7:20

NewYorker1, using your logic, I would say that you disapprove of Obama more than most.

By: dargent7 on 3/4/10 at 7:26

The same "most Tennesseans" would have voted for GW Bush & Cheney in 2008 if allowed. "Most Tennesseans" hate, despise Al Gore. "Most Tenesseans" want unrestricted gun laws, open carry, and into bars, restaurants, and parks.
The mind-set comes with the territory.
Where's that "EXIT" sign?

By: shinestx on 3/4/10 at 7:27

Idgaf, you're usually to comical to respond to, but I have to ask where you obtained that list. I think there are at least two dozen conservative GOP members who would be far and away better candidates than Sarah Palin. Not that I agree with all of the items on the list (some seem to be pulled from the nether regions), but it does contain some points that would have been blown-up by the corrupt leftist media had they applied to G.W. Bush or any Republican, instead of the O-mighty himself. For example, does anyone think that B.O.'s grades would be allowed to stay secret if he were a conservative? It's called Duh-ble standard in the media and everyone knows it now.

I must say I'm still shocked at the starry-eyed, mindless devotion to all things B.O.

By: shinestx on 3/4/10 at 7:30

When you find the exit, please use it Dargent! You're running out of "enlightened" places. Nationwide, B.O.'s favorability is down in the 40s now! It's what happens when a "divine" being falls from grace. Greek mythology is full of such stories. Or, you can just look to the world of mortals in politics.

By: shinestx on 3/4/10 at 7:36

Last thing I want to say is to the Dem-wits who wrote above that the poll was worthless (love how the messenger is always shot when the message is bad for Dem-wits). Anyway, a basic education in statistics would tell you that a random sample of 40 is enough to give a valid poll with a reasonably small margin of error. By enlarging the sample, only the margin of error gets smaller. Poll results and trends typically do not change. A random sample of 600 to 1000 is considered a fair size. Beyond a sample of about 1200, the margin of error does not change enough to justify the added cost of doing the survey.

The above is from my MBA classes at Stanford from 16 years ago.... but I'm sure, it's still applicable.

By: idgaf on 3/4/10 at 7:45

Hey its tough to find out your messiah is a mere mortal. An incometant one at that.

I say that but in truth he is probably brilliant in that he moved the country so far left in such a short time and dismantled the economic foundation. He put us in deep do-do quicker then Phill Rizzito could say Holy Cow.

By: caholt on 3/4/10 at 8:39

The fact is that most people who participated in this poll are either ignorant or totally oblivious to the daily news and really have no idea what is going on in the state or the country. This same poll indicates that over 70% of the population cannot name one single candidate running for governor.
IMHO this is a clear indication that the majority of Tennesseans are unfit to participate in the upcoming election. Tea Party sign quotes say it all!

"Keep your government hands off my Medicare" and "We don't need no Pubic Option"

By: cookeville on 3/4/10 at 9:05

What has changed? They disapproved during the election by that margin.

By: shinestx on 3/4/10 at 9:22

Um, caholt, show me the photo of the T-party sign, please. I have seen the one that says something to the effect of "keep your government hands off my healthcare..." . I don't disagree with the Public Option sign (grammatical infractions, no doubt, are for effect). I'd venture that most in the T-party do not agree with the so-called. That's right! It really is in an "option" in name only, as it will in fact be an unfunded mandate to the states, and worse, an entitlement that will run in the red in perpetuity. So that's the thing that T-party haters do not appear to understand about the opposition to Obamacare: its worsening of the national debt, that is risking out national sovereignty (among other things). The T-party arose from both Republicans and (yes!) Democrats who thought Obama was going to change the way things get done in DC. When it soon became clear that he in fact would exacerbate the problems people voted against Republicans for doing in '06/'08, obama's (and Dems') popularity began to sink. Look, people inherently know that quadrupling the (already bad) debt problem we face is not the solution to the economic recession. People are furious at the Dems (yes, because the GOP does not matter) for squandering a year to focus on a healthcare bill that a huge majority (66%) do not want. Many T-partiers are independents (a'la the Perot voters) who supported a change via B.O. WIth nowhere else to turn, the T-parties sprung up from the grassroots. And that, in a nutshell, is what the leftists who run the Dem-wit party are so scared of now. Their cover has been blown by their tyrannical grab of so much of the private sector... and with the arrogance of telling us that this time government will do it right. So our lack of faith in government is unjustified... and we're just idiots who don't understand!?!?! Understand that, and you'll understand the basis for the T-party movement.

By: madden on 3/4/10 at 9:23

Idiotgaffe's little list was written by someone in the "Bailin" Palin camp for sure, couldn't have been her because the palm of her hand is not that long, guess we can rule out Levi also

By: shinestx on 3/4/10 at 9:36

So how do clear statements made in the course of an article like this not make sense to so many "readers". I speak to those here who reflexively attack the survey as inaccurate (without any support for their comment), and of course, in typical fashion of the left, it's always done in a hateful tone. So that does not change the fact that so many "educated" (some might equate that with smart and intelligent) liberals cannot even get the point of a basic article such as this. To wit: we are treated to screeds about the ignorance of southerners/tennesseans/americans who are just too stupid to appreciate the magnificence of B.O.. No attempt to sound rational with points of disagreement are required. So attack the poll, the people, Fox News, the nation, the world, oh, and lest we forget, George Bush. But that will not change the fact that a year ago, polls like this showed a majority of support for B.O. (where were the naysayers then?). And now that support has declined. One bonehead above even wrote that B.O.'s support is the same as it was at the election. Yet, the ignorance is apparent in his/her failure to mention the post-inaugural rise in support for B.O.

Finally, I'm not surprised by a lot of liberal ignorance on this board (I hear it daily). But the troublesome thing for the nation is that this is merely a representation of the emotional (at the expense of cerebral) energy that rails against real solutions to the problems we face as a nation. For all the GOP's faults, I hear more hatred each day from liberals than I ever hear in a week from conservatives. Shame on you, liberals! And I'm not speaking to the duped Democrats out there who (for whatever reason) could not call themselves Republicans if their lives depended on it... they're called "blue dogs". Nope, I'm talking to the leftists who have overtaken the Dem-wit (that's why I call them that) party. Blame republicans, bush, tennesseans, americans in flyover country, fox, etc., but after a while you will see that there's only one person to blame for squandering the "hope" that even a majority of Tennesseans felt only one year ago.

By: madden on 3/4/10 at 9:48

bonehead and dem-wit?- you come off as being "hateful", out of touch with your own accusations. hope you don't live in a glass house. oh i get it, you're a repubic, you can deride others with impunity

By: gdiafante on 3/4/10 at 10:45

Of course most Tennseesans disapprove of Obama, this is a Red state. Duh.

The fact that people here are arguing about it indicate it's not only a red state, but a pretty dimwitted one too.

Neither surprise me.

By: conservarage on 3/4/10 at 11:13

Of course they disapprove. What's to APPROVE of? Sheesh.

By: shinestx on 3/4/10 at 11:35

maddening... I don't pretend to be "compassionate"... I know I am. Of course, we all have things we despise... and you've noted mine: Dem-wits and boneheads, who profess to be "oh so smart, but obviously are not!" I stand behind the point I so eloquently made above. You, on the other hand, are a waste of time.

By: d4deli on 3/4/10 at 11:52

The wolf is beginning to shed his sheep's clothes. Obama is not who he says he is, but yes, he is now President of the USA. These are scary times we are living in.

By: madden on 3/4/10 at 2:05

shitstak, very eloquent indeed

By: TITAN1 on 3/4/10 at 4:26

Oh no! The sky is falling, AGAIN!!!!!!

By: WickedTribe on 3/4/10 at 7:31

Wow, Tennessee disapproves of a black president? After they voted more strongly against him than they voted against Kerry, in opposition to every single state except Oklahoma?

What a shocking news story this is. Please, keep the pertinent informative news coming. I don't know what I'd do without these relevant and unexpected updates.

By: pswindle on 3/4/10 at 10:40

After the find in Florida, that tells the GOP how to put fear in Ameica about our President and other elected officials. I am glad that this has been exposed, but I think most knew how mean and angry the republicans are to have a Black President. The GOP cannot take a smart person in that office, but Bush set the bar so low that any old, white GOP guy can be elected and finish the USA for good.

By: SirKnight on 3/5/10 at 4:55

pswindle, are you REALLY that out of touch with current politics are are you deliberately ignoring the growing number of black Americans who call themselves Republicans AND running for office? What a stupid comment you made.

By: deepal on 3/19/10 at 6:51

Although this poll represents too small a sample to really reflect the voice of Tennesseans, I wouldn't be surprised if a majority of Tennesseans disapprove of Obama.

With all of the problems we're facing, I expect most Americans to disapprove of anyone in office right now, regardless of who it is or what party they belong to, black or white. It took quite some time for us to dig this hole, and it was already plenty deep before we elected a new POTUS. No President would be popular under these circumstances, much less a black President in the state of Tennessee. People need to stop looking for the quick fix - it doesn't apply here.

In 2008, a much better poll just prior to the election showed that almost all of the outlying Tennessee counties (i.e, rural) were opposed to Obama, while Nashville was strongly for him. Odd coincidence that Nashville has a large concentration of highly educated individuals who decide issues not based on political parties, but merit? Interesting...