New Poll: Both Parties Face Key Challenges In Wake of Supreme Court’s Obamacare Ruling
As both the Obama and Romney campaigns anxiously await tomorrow’s jobs report for the month of June, recent polling suggests that the Supreme Court last Thursday to uphold Obamacare has had at best, a modest and indeed, short-term impact on the President’s standing.
To be sure, the President now finds himself in a slightly stronger position vis-à-vis Mitt Romney than he was just a few weeks ago – with the latest Real Clear Politics average showing the President enjoying a narrow 2.6 point (47.0 percent to 44.4 percent) lead over Mitt Romney.
But make no mistake, notwithstanding the immediate confusion and division within the GOP — as underscored by a Monday television appearance by Romney senior campaign adviser Eric Fehrnstrom, who argued on MSNBC that the mandate is a penalty, not a tax – breaking with congressional Republicans — there is no sense that either candidate’s overall political standing has changed.
The former Massachusetts Governor remains within striking distance of the President – whose vulnerability in the polls became clearer and clearer over the course of the week.
President Obama’s job approval rating is well below the crucial fifty percent mark in the latest polling by Gallup(45%-47% disapproval), and Rasmussen (46%- 53% disapproval), and the latest Real Clear Politics average has the President with a net negative approval rating (47.6% – 48.3%).
These findings are consistent with the results to a new Newsweek/Daily Beast poll, conducted by my polling firm, Douglas E. Schoen, LLC. immediately following the Supreme Court ruling – in which a solid majority (54%) of voters said they disapproved of President Obama’s overall job performance, a plurality of voters said it is time to replace him with someone else (48%), and only 42% said he has done his job well enough to deserve reelection.
Moreover, voters said that Governor Romney would do a better job on handling virtually every single domestic policy measure than President Obama – including the economy (52%-37%), illegal immigration (41%-38%), health care (48%-40%), balancing the budget (48%-44%), fighting crime (35%-33%), and holding the line on taxes (45%-42%).
As President Obama sets off on his “Betting On America” bus tour through key swing states Ohio and Pennsylvania, it is clear that the Supreme Court ruling will not be enough to reelect Mr. Obama in 2012.
The fact that the President got no real bounce at all and saw no fundamental change in his ratings – even while a solid majority (58%) of voters see the Supreme Court decision as a major political win for Obama, while only 19% see it as a win for Romney, and 23% are unsure — indicates the profound disquiet American voters feel with current economic circumstances.
Indeed, these findings underscore the real and fundamental political problem that President Obama and indeed both parties face — the economy.
Having suffered in the polls following the poor job figures for March, April, and May, the only way the President can turn these numbers around is to demonstrate real leadership on fiscal issues.
Tomorrow, the Labor Department will release the job report for June. Stay tuned.
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