There are more worrisome poll findings for President Obama.
An Associated Press-GfK Poll released this afternoon found that a majority of Americans are back to believing the country is headed in the wrong direction after his inauguration initially boosted hope and optimism. Those thinking the country is going in the wrong direction hit 54 percent, up from 46 percent in June.
Obama's 55 percent approval rating is still better than Bill Clinton and about the same as George W. Bush six months into their presidencies, but those who think Obama can improve the economy is down 19 percentage points since he took office in January, and those who think he can reduce the deficit, withdraw troops from Iraq, and improve respect for the US around the world are all down 15 percentage points. On overhauling healthcare, hopes for success have dropped by 6 percentage points.
The president's other numbers are also down. About two-thirds now believe he understands the problems of ordinary Americans, down from 81 percent in January, while 69 percent think he's a strong leader, down from 78 percent before his inauguration.
The survey, conducted by GfK Roper Public Affairs & Media on July 16-20, has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.
About Political Intelligence
Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.