More Americans say Obama is trustworthy, a strong leader and someone who stands up for his beliefs; 52% approve of the job he is doing and 59% have a favorable opinion of him.
Americans are hearing less negative news about the nation’s economy than they were just a month ago. Perceptions of news about the job situation have improved across partisan lines.
Americans values and basic beliefs are more polarized along partisan lines than at any point in the past 25 years. Party has now become the single largest fissure in American society, with the values gap between Republicans and Democrats greater than gender, age, race or class divides.
The gap between favorable ratings of the federal government and state and local governments is wider than ever. Just a third of Americans have a favorable opinion of the federal government, the lowest positive rating in 15 years.
As another presidential election year approaches, the political and economic landscape has changed in a number of ways since four years ago. The public’s mood was not very good, but still a lot better than it is today.
Negative opinions about the performance of news organizations now equal or surpass all-time highs on nine of 12 core measures the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press has been tracking since 1985.
For the first time in his presidency, significantly more Americans disapprove than approve of the way Barack Obama is handling his job as president and and the margin of strong disapproval over strong approval has widened. But the public is also profoundly discontented with the political leadership of both parties, angry at the federal government and dissatisfied with the way things are going in the country.
More Americans now think that members of Congress who support the Tea Party are having a negative effect than said that in January, at the start of the new Congress.
Americans have more confidence in President Obama than other key players to do the right thing on the debt issue, but that amounts to only about half of the public. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor gets the lowest vote of confidence, although that is partly because he is less well-known.
Americans' are less discontent with the federal government but no more ready for political compromise. Views of Congress remain heavily negative, while Obama's ratings stay positive. On social issues, the public is, for the first time, evenly split on gay marriage, while support for legal abortion, legalized marijuana -- but not gun control -- have all risen.