Poll: How Much Will Obama’s Flagging Approval Rating Affect the Midterms?

National Journal
Peter Bell, Sarah Mimms and Michael Catalini
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Peter Bell Sarah Mimms and Michael Catalini
May 1, 2014, 5 p.m.

How much do you think the pres­id­ent’s flag­ging ap­prov­al rat­ing will af­fect the midterms?


A lot: 40%
Some: 43%
A little: 17%
Not at all: 0%

A lot

“In elec­tions, some things are caus­a­tion, some are cor­rel­a­tion. This is both.”

“It al­ways has a big ef­fect, no mat­ter the pres­id­ent.”

“Demo­crats have yet to find a re­deem­ing midterm voice.”

“The pres­id­ent’s ap­prov­al rat­ings al­ways mat­ter in midterms — if he can get them up to high 40s, that helps Dems. If in the low 40s or be­low, will be a very bad year for Dems.”

“Obama needs to be on the up­swing to pre­vent Demo­crats from the down­swing.”

“But it’s not today’s rat­ings; it’s Oc­to­ber’s that will im­pact.”


“The real ques­tion is, how much is Con­gress’s bad rat­ing go­ing to im­pact midterms?”

“It will have an im­pact, but in­di­vidu­al cam­paigns will have dy­nam­ics that define their par­tic­u­lar race.”

“He’s less of a factor than he could be, but he still raises more money than any­one else. Ad­vice to can­did­ates: Cash the checks.”

“They may not be flag­ging by Novem­ber.”

“My ad­vice to GOP: Be care­ful what you wish for. POTUS num­bers will re­bound in fall.”

“He is do­ing worst where it mat­ters most: AK, AR, LA, and NC.”

“Vir­tu­ally no Demo­crat be­ne­fits from close as­so­ci­ation with this White House.”

A little

“Hate Wash­ing­ton, love your mem­ber of Con­gress.”

“De­pends on wheth­er Obama­care works.”

How much do you think the pres­id­ent’s flag­ging ap­prov­al rat­ing will af­fect the midterms?


A lot: 70%
Some: 26%
A little: 2%
Not at all: 2%

A lot

“Just ima­gine how dif­fer­ent the at­mo­sphere would be if his job ap­prov­al were 65 per­cent.”

“It’s already res­ul­ted in bet­ter re­cruit­ing for the GOP than we’d have ex­pec­ted a year ago.”

“Winter is com­ing for the Demo­crats.”

“Pre­tend­ing oth­er­wise is noth­ing more than wish­ful think­ing on the part of the Demo­crats.”

“For every Demo­crat who wanted to ap­pear with the pres­id­ent and pre­tend they are part of the Double­mint twins, this is a huge prob­lem.”

“Amer­ica is ex­hausted with Barack Obama, and it will cost Demo­crats.”

“Like win­ning, the pres­id­ent’s ap­prov­al isn’t everything — it’s the only thing.”

“Obama’s pres­id­ency is like a su­pe­r­hyped new TV show that nev­er quite at­trac­ted view­ers, was well-liked by a hand­ful of crit­ics, and fi­nally got can­celed about three years too late.”


“It’s still just May.”

“I think it will hinge more on a par­tic­u­lar Con­gress mem­ber’s vote on Obama­care than the pres­id­ent’s ap­prov­al rat­ings.”

“Prob­ably not to the ex­tent that Re­pub­lic­ans would like it to.”

“It is already baked in the cake. Pry­or, Landrieu, Be­gich, and Hagan are already in trouble.”

Not at all

“Only 923 days re­main­ing.”

… … … … …

Demo­crat­ic Polit­ic­al In­siders Jill Alp­er, John An­za­lone, Brad Ban­non, Dave Beat­tie, Andy Bech­hoe­fer, Cor­nell Belch­er, Matt Ben­nett, Mitchell W. Ber­ger, Mike Ber­man, Stephanie Bosh, Paul Brath­waite, Donna Brazile, Mark Brew­er, Ed Bruley, George Bruno, Bon­nie Camp­bell, Bill Car­rick, Guy Cecil, Mar­tin J. Chavez, Tony Coelho, Larry Co­hen, Jerry Craw­ford, Brendan Daly, Jeff Daniel­son, Peter Daou, Howard Dean, Scott De­Fife, Jim De­mers, Tad Dev­ine, Dav­id Di Mar­tino, Debbie Din­gell, Mon­ica Dix­on, Patrick Dor­ton, Pat Du­jakovich, An­ita Dunn, Jeff Eller, Steve El­men­d­orf, Carter Eskew, Vic Fazio, Peter Fenn, Scott Fer­son, Jim Fleischmann, Tina Flournoy, Don Fo­ley, Jef­frey For­bes, Vin­cent Fril­lici, Gina Glantz, Niles Godes, John Mi­chael Gonza­lez, Joe Grand­mais­on, Anna Green­berg, Stan Green­berg, Pat Griffin, Larry Griso­lano, Mi­chael Gron­stal, Lisa Grove, Mar­cia Hale, Jill Hanauer, Dick Har­poot­li­an, Paul Harstad, Laura Hartigan, Doug Hat­t­away, Mike Henry, Kar­en Hicks, Leo Hindery Jr., Har­old Ickes, Mar­cus Jadotte, John Jameson, Steve Jard­ing, Jona­thon Jones, Jim Jordan, Gale Kauf­man, Lisa Koun­toupes, Celinda Lake, Dav­id Lang, Penny Lee, Chris Le­hane, Jeff Link, Bob Malo­ney, Jim Man­ley, Steve Marchand, Jim Mar­gol­is, Paul Maslin, Keith Ma­son, Susan Mc­Cue, Ger­ald McEntee, Steve McMa­hon, Tom McMa­hon, Phil Mc­Namara, Dav­id Med­ina, Mi­chael Mee­han, Mark Mell­man, John Mer­rigan, Mi­chael Mon­roe, Steve Murphy, Janet Na­pol­it­ano, Dav­id Nas­sar, Mar­cia Nich­ols, John Nor­ris, Tom Ochs, Tom O’Don­nell, Jef­frey Peck, De­bora Pig­na­telli, Tony Podesta, Je­frey Pol­lock, Jack Quinn, Larry Rasky, Mame Re­iley, Ed Rendell, Steve Ric­chetti, Will Robin­son, Steve Rosenth­al, Dav­id Rudd, Ry­an Rudom­in­er, John Ry­an, Mi­chael Sar­geant, Stephanie Schriock, Terry Shu­maker, Sean Sin­clair, Phil Sing­er, Erik Smith, Doug Sosnik, Greg Speed, Darry Sragow, Ken Strasma, Doug Thor­nell, Jef­frey Tram­mell, Ed Tur­l­ing­ton, Rick Wien­er, James Wil­li­ams, JoDee Win­ter­hof, Bri­an Wolff, Jon Young­dahl, and Jim Zo­gby.

GOP Polit­ic­al In­siders Dan Al­len, Stan An­der­son, Gary An­dres, Saul­i­us (Saul) Anuzis, Rich Ashooh, Whit Ayres, Brett Bader, Mitch Bain­wol, Bri­an Baker, Gary Bauer, Dav­id Beck­with, Paul Ben­necke, Clark Ben­son, Wayne Ber­man, Bri­an Bieron, Charlie Black, Kirk Bla­lock, Car­mine Boal, Jeff Boeyink, Ron Bon­jean, Jeff Bu­ley, Luke Byars, Nick Calio, Al Carde­n­as, Danny Car­roll, Alex Cas­tel­lanos, Ron Christie, Jim Cic­coni, Jonath­an Col­le­gio, Rob Collins, Cesar Conda, Jake Cor­man, Scott Cot­ting­ton, Jay Cran­ford, Greg Crist, Di­ane Crookham-John­son, Fer­gus Cul­len, Tom Dav­is, Mike Den­nehy, Ken Duber­stein, Debi Durham, Sara Fa­gen, Frank Fahren­kopf, John Fee­hery, Don Fierce, Mindy Finn, Carl Forti, Alex Gage, Bruce A. Gates, Sam Geduldig, Adam Geller, Ben­jamin Gins­berg, Dav­id Gir­ard-di­Carlo, Bill Green­er, Jonath­an Grella, Lanny Grif­fith, Janet Mullins Gris­som, Doug Gross, Todd Har­ris, Steve Hart, Chris­toph­er Healy, Ral­ph Hell­mann, Chris Hen­ick, Terry Holt, Dav­id Ian­nel­li, Ed Ingle, Jim In­no­cenzi, Clark Judge, Dav­id Keat­ing, Dav­id Ken­sing­er, Bob Kjel­lander, Ed Kut­ler, Chris La­Civ­ita, Jim Lake, Steven Law, Steve Lom­bardo, Kev­in Mad­den, Joel Maiola, Gary Malo­ney, Dav­id Mar­in, Mary Matal­in, Dan Mat­toon, Bri­an Mc­Cor­mack, Mark McKin­non, Kyle Mc­Slar­row, Ken Mehl­man, Jim Mer­rill, Lisa Cam­ooso Miller, Tim Mor­ris­on, Mike Murphy, Phil Musser, Ron Nehring, Terry Nel­son, Neil Ne­w­house, Dav­id Nor­cross, Zi­ad Ojakli, Jack Oliv­er, Todd Olsen, Kev­in O’Neill, Con­nie Par­toy­an, Billy Piper, Van B. Poole, Tom Rath, Scott Reed, Dav­id Rehr, Tom Reyn­olds, Steve Roberts, Jason Roe, Dav­id Roeder­er, Dan Schnur, Russ Schriefer, Rich Schwarm, Brent Seaborn, Rick Shelby, An­drew Shore, Kev­in Shuvalov, Don Sipple, Ken Spain, Fred Steep­er, Bob Steven­son, Terry Sul­li­van, Dav­id Tamasi, Eric Tan­en­blatt, Richard Temple, Heath Thompson, Jay Tim­mons, War­ren Tomp­kins, Ted Van Der Meid, Dirk van Don­gen, Jan van Lo­huizen, Stew­art Ver­dery, Dick Wadhams, John Weaver, Lezlee West­ine, Dave Win­ston, Ginny Wolfe, Fred Wszolek, and Mat­thew Zablud. 

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