An ABC News poll released this morning shows that a vast majority — 69 percent — of Americans approve of President Obama and 72 percent view him favorably, “the best job approval rating at this point in 20 years, [and] the broadest personal popularity since Ronald Reagan.” Fifty percent now say the United States is headed in the right direction, up 31 points since the end of the Bush administration, when only 19 percent thought the country was on the right track. Other figures from the poll:
— “Fifty-eight percent approve of Obama’s work on the economy.”
— “Obama leads the Republicans in Congress in trust to handle the economy by a garish 61-24 percent.”
— “A remarkable 90 percent say Obama is ‘willing to listen to different points of view’; fewer than half said that about George W. Bush.”
— Seventy-seven “percent call Obama a strong leader, nearly matching Bush’s best a few months after 9/11.”
A majority supported Obama’s decision to release the torture memos, but only 49 percent support his blanket ban on torture. That said, a majority still favors holding investigations into the Bush administration’s use of torture.