Four in 10 Americans “strongly” disapprove of how President Obama is handling the job of president in the new Washington Post-ABC News poll, the highest that number has risen during his time in office and a sign of the hardening opposition to him as he seeks a second term.
While the topline numbers are troubling enough, dig deeper into them and the news gets no better for Obama. Forty-three percent of independents — a group the president spent the better part of the last year courting — strongly disapprove of the job he is doing. Forty-seven percent of people 65 years of age and older — reliable voters in any election — strongly disapprove of how he is doing his job.
Strong opposition to Obama has grown markedly since the start of the year.
In a mid-January Post-ABC survey, 28 percent strongly disapproved of the job Obama was doing. With the exception of a poll in early May that followed hard on the killing of Osama bin Laden , that number has steadily ticked upward, as the year has worn on and the economy has remained sluggish (at best).
And even as his strong disapproval numbers have risen, Obama’s strong approval numbers have gone into a mirror-image decline.
In January, 30 percent strongly approved of the job Obama was doing. In the latest Post-ABC survey, that numbers is 21 percent and, as recently as early August, it had dipped to 18 percent.
All of those numbers — and yes, we here at the Fix do love us some poll numbers — point to a simple fact: The “anyone but Obama” crowd is getting larger and more strident in its opinions, while the president’s base is growing less and less strongly supportive of how he is doing his job.