Bloomberg by the Numbers: 55%

Photograph by Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

President Barack Obama speaks about gun violence as well as the economy in Chicago on Feb. 15, 2013.

That was President Barack Obama’s job approval rating in a Bloomberg National Poll conducted Feb. 15-18.

It is the president’s strongest level of support since September 2009, Bloomberg’s Mike Dorning reports.

Forty percent disapprove of the job Obama is doing as president, the poll found. On seven specific issues, Obama’s approval rating ranged from 35 percent on the federal budget deficit to 59 percent on terrorism. On the economy, public opinion is divided, with 47 percent approving and 49 percent disapproving of the president’s performance.

Obama and the Democratic Party he leads have a stronger public image than that of the Republican Party, which lost the presidential election in 2012 and also lost ground in the House and Senate.

Fifty-six percent of respondents said they have very favorable or mostly favorable feelings toward Obama, compared with 47 percent for the Democratic Party and 35 percent for the Republican Party.

By a margin of 43 percent to 34 percent, Americans blame Republicans in Congress more than Obama and Democrats in Congress for “what’s gone wrong in Washington,” Bloomberg’s Richard Rubin reports. Obama and Republicans haven’t reached an agreement to avert automatic spending cuts set to take effect March 1.

In other poll findings, about half of Americans think the housing market will improve over the next year, compared with 16 percent who think it will worsen, Bloomberg’s David J. Lynch reports.

The Bloomberg National Poll was conducted by Selzer & Co. of Des Moines, Iowa, and is based on interviews with 1,003 Americans ages 18 or older.

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