WASHINGTON — As President Barack Obama prepares to be sworn into office for a second time, 51% of Americans now approve of the overall job he is doing as president. This is a slight improvement from this time a year ago, but lower than the approval rating he received just after taking office in 2009 when 62% approved.

President Obama Overall Job Rating


Looking back on his first term, Mr. Obama reached his highest approval rating – 68% – as he marked his first 100 days in office. 41% was his lowest rating, in March 2012 when the country faced sharp increases in gas prices. Throughout most of 2010 and 2011, his approval hovered just below 50% with one notable exception: after the killing of Osama bin Laden President Obama’s approval rating rose to 57%.

President Obama Job Rating: Highs and Lows

When compared to other recent past presidents, President Obama’s overall job approval rating is similar President George W. Bush’s as he was heading into his second term, but lower than the approval ratings of Presidents Bill Clinton and Ronald Reagan just before they began their second terms.

Presidential Job Ratings: Heading Into a 2nd Term

However, fewer than half of Americans approve of how the President is handling some key issues. He does best on foreign policy (49%), and gets his lowest approval rating on handling the deficit (37%).

Mr. Obama’s rating on the economy is similar to last month, but fewer approve of his handling of taxes today (45%), than did in December (52%).

President Obama’s Handling of…


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