How you like me now?!

October 16, 2009

hillaryRemember during the presidential campaign, when Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton was asked about her “likability” compared to that of  rival Barack Obama?

The inference was that people didn’t like her as much as they liked him, even after he told her during a presidential debate: “You’re likable enough.”

That was then.

This is now.

Secretary of State Clinton is more popular (or can we just say likable) than President Obama, according to a Gallup poll released on Thursday.

Clinton is viewed favorably by 62 percent of Americans, just three points below her rating in January. Obama’s favorable rating has fallen 22 points from 78 percent in January to land at 56 percent.

Here’s a look back at that moment in New Hampshire in 2008, when Clinton’s likability was in question.

The Gallup report says the change in the relative popularity of Clinton to Obama may have more to do with their respective jobs than their personalities.

He came into office with sky-high ratings. But a battered economy, healthcare, and two wars have taken a toll  on his numbers.  Clinton is juggling some tough issues too. But the secretary of state is not in the glare of the spotlight as much as her boss.

The poll was taken Oct. 1 through Oct. 4,  before Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize — a surprise that may have given him a boost or helped push his numbers down even more.

We’ll have to wait for the next poll to see.

For more Reuters political coverage click here.

Photo credit:Reuters/Cathal McNaughton (Clinton in Belfast, Northern Ireland, October 12, 2009)


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The opinion polls are really the direct inverse of what happened during the Presidential elections. I will say that Clinton is at her elements in her job while Obama seems to be caught in a bind. He needs to push out the unpopular policies but he seems to be far too much a nice guy to be doing this. Maybe he should do a revamp of his image to be more of a tough talking tough working President rather than Mr Nice Guy.

Posted by Lim Boon Chuan | Report as abusive

While I vehemently disagree with Hillary on virtually any topic, I kind of feel sorry for her because she has been so marginalized by the current adiminstration. She gets the dregs leftover that Obama has already handed out to some specially appointed “envoy.” Sympathy aside, I would still never vote her.

Posted by Kevin | Report as abusive

Hillary Clinton wears the mantle of power well. Being on the fringe for many years as First Lady helped her do this. She is assured, relaxed and comfortable with resposibility of her role. There is a selflessness about her too. Like Obama, it is obvious she only wants to do good job.

Posted by Nick Warren | Report as abusive

It’s more than the battered economy, two wars, and healthcare. It is Obama’s socialist policies for the whole enchilada plus his apologies in foreign countries that annoy a great many Americans, and now his indecision about sending additional troops.

According to the main-street-media we’ve had a battered economy for years, even when the unemployment rate was around 4%. During the Clinton years 4% was a good thing but during the Bush years not so much. During the Bush year’s a jobless recovery was a horrendous thing, today it is the new normal.

While everyone agrees something has to be done about healthcare most do not want government-run-healthcare.

What is it about this war against al Qaeda that makes it two wars?? In World War II we had three enemies in separate locations yet we called it one war. In this conflict we have one enemy in separate locations. Curious. But I digress.

War is war and we are in war in two locations and the President acts as though our soldiers are on a Boy Scout outing.

On the other hand, as the article so aptly point out, Mrs. Clinton has not been in the limelight much, Obama soaked up all of it, not counting the inconsequential tiffs about whose who and whose the boss between her and Bill. And we are talking foreign policy, not the American public’s strong suite.

If the main street media became as outraged over today’s 10% unemployment as it was over 4% unemployment during the Bush years, Barry’s numbers would sink below a whale’s belly.

Do you think Congress would pay attention then?

Posted by HH | Report as abusive

She is less of a socialist (just a little). That is why she is more likable, espcially now that we have discovered Obama’s true agenda.

Posted by AB | Report as abusive

Obama excels in getting himself liked. I’m anxious to see how good he is in achieving.
BTW, that Nobel Peace prize thing is a scandal.

Posted by yr | Report as abusive

I think Obama is smart enough to know that his popularity will take a hit after he starts changing the status quo – remember that most of the negativity is spawned by megacorp influence and/or the uninformed electorate and/or racists – is it really a surprise? Obama is doing a great job cleaning up the mess that was left to him while simultaneously forging ahead with progressive policies that will strengthen this country nationally and internationally. Clinton is faring pretty well also, except that she is facing an anti-woman culture in many of the places she is working right now (most of the Muslim world), so she is going to have her work cut out for her. I like what I see, I like replacing dumbed-down cowboy arrogance and war profiteering a la BushCo with intellegence and rational decision-making. 4 years from now, I predict a landslide second term for Obama – and he will have earned it.

Posted by Roc1 | Report as abusive

It isn’t a matter of likability. That is a waste of energy and a misdirection of priorities, which we havetoo much of in American Politics and NEWS.

Obama is a disappointment to those who gave up hope in this country during the Bush(s) administration(s).

As Constitutional expert, why has he left the Patriot Act in place? As a reformist, why did he name Ron Emmanual as Chief of Staff and put Geitner in the Treasury? At that point, he killed the last shred of hope I had for this country’s survival.

Anyone that signed to give the bailout, should never be President nor should anyone that signed be in the senate or congress. In other word…..GET ALL THE BUMS OUT.

Time for a 3rd 4th and 5th Party.


Posted by Pat Cameron | Report as abusive

They are both smooth talking professional politicians. That is not a compliment.

No reasonable person believes a word they say. They distort some information and flat out lie about the rest.

They say whatever they need to, to make the point of the moment. – Emphasis on the moment.

They surround themselves with some of the most reprehensible communists, socialists and thieves they can find.

Don’t get me wrong, there were plenty of slime balls that circled the previous clown too.

Posted by Mortimer SNerd | Report as abusive

People are now seeing that he was all hot air and put in store front window as dressing by the so-called power brokers who were reluctant to do what they were told or expected to do by someone with experiance and substance and the votes behind her.
I blame the DNC for selling their souls for self centered fluff instead or backing someone with a conviction and determination to get the job done.

Posted by gil martin | Report as abusive

It’s not the status quo that he’s changing…some of the people who voted “no confidence” in the October poll voted against him. The drop in President Obama’s approval rating reflects the wake-up call that reality frequently limits idealism. His was an entertaining show while it lasted, but folks are finally realizing that the campaign dog and pony show was just that. The Nobel Prize demonstrates how hungry the world is for warm hugs and positive thoughts, but I think that – when America goes back to the polls in three years – folks will vote based on facts rather than on the desire to feel good.

Posted by jnels | Report as abusive

The president made it perfectly clear during the campaign that it would take more than one term to get out of the huge mess Bush and his cohorts got the world into. Interim opinions will come and go, but let’s use something called PATIENCE! I continue to stand with Obamaa!

Posted by Anthony | Report as abusive

It is the clearly “progressive” thinker that would still be pulling for “O” now. After all the reality of his socialist agenda is coming to light, you would think the learned souls like Roc1 would be joining the “teabaggers” to run Barry out of town…but there ya go… Unfortunately, Roc1 is likely right on – he will win by a landslide…

Posted by iH8oB@ma | Report as abusive

I read Reuters to get away from the posts and comments regurgitating the dribble that comes out of Fox News and its ilk. Hearing posts with such keywords as “main stream media” and “socialist agenda” and “apologies” is very disappointing as I always thought that Reuters attracted critical thinkers. So here is the irony of the whole situation; the biggest fault of Obama is believing that if you are likable and moderate people will look for ways to work together. He felt there was virtue in everyone getting some of what they wanted. The man has been a moderate to the highest degree. But instead of tempering the right’s hatred of him, which he thought it might, its only disappointed the left. The fact is that the right will never stop hating Obama … and their venom towards him has nothing to do with his politics. You see, here is the dirty secret I’ve come to realize; the right has wholesale adopted what they always spoke out against … Identity Politics. The Christian conservative movement is just White Identity politics. And thats why, I now know that its not about what Obama does but about who he is that fuels their ‘outrage’.

Posted by Juls | Report as abusive

Moderates and Indie’s don’t think so great of Obama anymore either. The agenda’s are very real. And his policies are tanking the American Agenda of freedom, capitalism, and peace.

Here’s the dirty little secret… the man wasn’t ready for the job. 2012 elections will speak for themselves… the media will spew Obama-ganda till we are sick of it… Obama LOSES in a landslide.

Posted by carrot | Report as abusive

If everyone who disagrees with Obama a racist? What is everyone who disagreed with Bush? I am, sure there are people who attack Obama because of the color of his skin, just as I am sure they are offset by an equal number who support him because of the color of his skin. The race card has been played, it is time we moved on. Does everyone who says it was Bush and his cohorts who got us into this mess, whether it be the war or the economy, fail to remember that it was AL Qadea who attacked us, and that there was a Democratic congress and senate in power for the last two years of the Bush administration? I agree with Pat. Get all the Bums out, and while we’re at it, how about term limits for all of them?
Obama_ just a bag of wind who reminds me of the kids who ran for office in gradeschool, making a lot of promises that they cna\'[t keep. It’s time we all grew up.

Posted by HARRY | Report as abusive

Ms. Secretary of State Clinton is a permanent fixture in American Politics. It is not about like or dislike, it is about acceptance of that which is. She seems well positioned by this administration as Secretary of State.

Posted by James Reginald Harris, jr. | Report as abusive

Popularity is a fleeting thing. I do think Hillary is a pretty good politician, but as far as trust, the jury is still out on that. She has not done anything wrong yet, so that is a plus for her. I think Barak should use the hammer of executive order a bit more in order to show that he can get things done. I do believe that he is still trying to work with the Republican party, but that corpse is dead.

Posted by f belz | Report as abusive

the americans (specilly this woman) are the top terrorist in the world. really is true

Posted by Al Zim Alzahauri | Report as abusive