Americans are more pessimistic about the economy than they have been in more than two years, as gas prices soar, unemployment remains high and Washington battles it out over federal spending, a new poll suggests.
In a New York Times/CBS News poll released late Thursday, views of the path on which the country is headed are the worst they’ve been since just weeks after President Barack Obama took office in early 2009. Twenty-six percent of those surveyed said the country is on the right track, while 70 percent said it’s on the wrong one. In February 2009, 23 percent of those surveyed for a CBS poll said it was on the right track, while 68 percent said it was on the wrong one.
Eighty percent of those surveyed, meanwhile, said they think the economy is doing fairly or very bad, while 17 percent said it is fairly good and just 2 percent said it is very good.
On the economy, though, Obama does worse. His approval rating on economic matters is at 38 percent, while disapproval is at 57 percent. That disapproval number is the highest it’s ever been for Obama; before this poll, its height was 54 percent in July 2010. He does similarly poorly on his handling of the federal budget deficit – 33 percent approve, while 59 percent disapprove.