Public approval of President Obama’s job performance has dropped slightly this spring as Americans have grown increasingly concerned about unemployment and the federal budget deficit, according to a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll.
The poll shows that 56 percent of Americans give Obama a thumbs-up on his performance as president, down from 61 percent percent in April. The proportion expressing disapproval rose to 34 percent from 30 percent.
The telephone survey of 1,008 adults, conducted June 12-15, carries a margin for error of 3.1 percentage points.
The shift, five months after Obama took office as president, follows continued bad news on the unemployment rate, which rose to 9.4 percent in May. Some 35 percent of those surveyed called unemployment the most important economic issue facing the country, up a bit from 33 percent in January.
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Another 24 percent of those surveyed called the federal budget deficit the most important issue, up from 15 percent in January.
That explains why Republican have pressed the case that Obama has failed to curb the deficit, which is expected to hit $1.8 trillion this year. That argument appears to have taken a toll on the president even though just 6 percent of those surveyed hold the Obama administration responsible for the deficit.