A new Gallup polling analysis finds pro-abortion President Barack Obama saw his approval rating drop in all 50 states in 2010 — in what could be an indicator of a weakened position heading into his 2012 re-election campaign.
“Obama’s overall average approval rating in 2010 was 47%, down 11 percentage points from the 58% he recorded in his first calendar year in office,” Gallup notes. “Obama’s approval rating fell in 2010 compared with 2009 in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, although the general rank order of the states based on Obama job approval was quite similar in both years.”
Obama’s approval rating fell the most in Vermont and the least in Mississippi. There appears to be no systematic pattern explaining the degree to which Obama either gained or lost approval across the states — because conservative southern and Western states started out not liking Obama, but he also had further to fall in states where his approval numbers were higher.
Voters in Vermont, Arizona, Kentucky, Missouri, Utah and Wyoming changed their minds about Obama more frequently than voters in other states while voters in Mississippi, Delaware, Hawaii, Nebraska, and Colorado were most likely to keep their initial impression of the pro-abortion president.
“Broadly speaking, residents of 20 states gave Obama an approval rating within three percentage points of his national average (between 43.8% and 49.8%). Twelve states plus the District of Columbia had average approval ratings above that range, and in 18 states, approval fell below it,” Gallup said.
Obama’s approval rating in Ohio in 2010 was 47.4, down 7.9 from 2009; in Pennsylvania was 46.3, down 11.1 from 2009; in Florida 45.8, down 11 from 2009; in Missouri 41.4, down 14.1 from 2009; in Virginia 46.6, down 11.1 from 2009; and in Indiana 43.9, down 11.4.
Although Obama’s approval numbers have fallen everywhere, they have not fallen enough him some states to put him behind a Republican presidential candidate in 2012. Looking at the end of 2010 approval ratings in every state, discounting those handful of voters in every state who neither approved nor disapproved of Obama’s performance, and using the updated electoral vote counts for 2012, Obama is shown winning the electoral college 307-227.
To defeat Obama, Republicans would need to flip Pennsylvania, Virginia, Maine and North Carolina into the GOP category — which is a doable task given that Obama’s net approval ratings in each state is one percent or less. in addition to those states, Obama also has net approval ratings of two percent or less in Iowa, Ohio, Mississippi, and Nevada — three states that are in play in 2012 and Mississippi voted against Obama in 2008.
Thus, while Obama holds an electoral college lead, based on the Gallup analysis, Republicans are definitely within striking distance in plenty of states to give them options of combining several battleground states to make the electoral math work in their favor.
Gallup concludes its state-by-state analysis of Obama’s approval numbers in 2010 this way:
“President Obama’s average job approval rating fell from 58% to 47% between 2009 and 2010. This nationwide average obscures significant differences across the 50 states of the Union. More broadly, the president enjoyed 50% or higher approval in a group of 12 traditionally Democratic states, plus the District of Columbia. At the same time, he suffered average approval rates of 43% or less in 18 other states, most of which are traditionally “red” states.
A look at the 20 states in which Obama’s approval rating is within three points of the national average may well provide a preview of where the most intense campaigning will occur in the coming 2012 presidential election. Most presidential elections are fought over the so-called swing states, whose voters can tilt enough in one political direction or the other to make their state competitive. Obama’s 2010 presidential approval ratings would suggest that states such as Florida, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Ohio, and Nevada — all of which have average Obama approval ratings within one point of the national average — may once again be the battlegrounds of the coming election.”