In the past few days, a number of national polls have been conducted that measure President Obama’s performance after one month in office. Beyond Obama’s continuing high job approval rating, the polls have found that the public believes Obama has made a good faith effort to work in a bipartisan manner to address America’s problems:
WaPo/ABC News: 73 percent say Obama is “trying to compromise with the Republican leaders in Congress” while just 34 percent believe Republican leaders are trying to compromise with Obama.
NYT/CBS News: 74 percent think Obama is “trying to work with Republicans in Congress” while just 31 percent think Republicans in Congress are trying to work with Obama.
Fox News/Opinion Dynamics: 68 percent believe that Obama “has sincerely tried to reach out to Republicans and be bipartisan” while only 33 percent believe Republicans have “sincerely tried to be helpful to Barack Obama and be bipartisan.”
As Greg Sargent points out, the New York Times/CBS News poll had a particularly interesting finding regarding bipartisanship. According to the poll, “a sizable majority wants Obama to pursue his policies with or without Republican support” while “a huge majority says that Republicans should emphasize working with Obama in a bipartisan way over pursuing their policy ideas.” Matt Yglesias put the numbers into a chart:
The polls had other interesting finding unrelated to bipartisanship.
On Health Care:
— CNN/Opinion Research Corp. found that 7 in 10 Americans “would favor a proposal that would increase the government’s influence over the health-care system in an attempt to reduce costs and expand coverage.”
— NYT/CBS News found that after the economy, health care is the domestic policy area that Americans “want the President and Congress to concentrate on MOST right now.”
— Fox News/Opinion Dynamics found that 66 percent of Americans that it is “the responsibility of the federal government” to “make sure all Americans have health care.”
On The Size Of The Recovery Package:
— WaPo/ABC News found that 63 percent believe that “more economic stimulus by the government will be needed” to improve the economy.
— NYT/CBS News found that 69 percent believe that the stimulus package wasn’t big enough and more money will be needed in the months ahead to stimulate the economy.
Finally, the majority of respondents to the NYT/CBS News poll were against congressional hearings into the Bush administration’s detainee and wiretapping policies, with 58 percent saying they didn’t think they were necessary. Only 37 percent want hearings. Another 68 percent believe that some Democratic lawmakers favor hearings “mostly for political reasons.”