The Washington Times - August 6, 2009, 07:28AM

Two new polls out Thursday morning show President Obama’s approval rating continuing to slide.

A Quinnipiac poll of 2,409 “registered voters” (2 point margin of error) shows the president with a 50 percent approval rating, with 42 percent disapproving. A CNN poll of 1,136 “adult Americans” (3 point margin of error) shows Obama with a 56 percent approval rating and 40 percent disapproval.

Both of these scores show a slump in the president’s job approval. A Quinnipiac poll in early July showed 57 percent approval and 33 percent disapproval, and a CNN poll at the end of June showed 61 percent approval and 37 percent disapproval.

So the president lost 16 points in the Quinnipiac poll and lost 8 points in the CNN poll.

Perhaps most importantly, independents polled by Quinnipiac showed a split, 45 percent to 45 percent, on the president’s job approval. That’s down from 52 percent approval and 37 percent approval in June.

The Quinnipiac poll also majority or near-majority disapproval for the president on the economy (49 percent approval/45 percent disapproval), health care (52 percent approval/39 percent disapproval), but showed 52 percent approval on foreign policy and 38 percent disapproval. Yet again, however, all these numbers show a downward trend.

Those polled are not big fans of Congress. There is 59 percent disapproval of Congressional Republicans, with 29 percent approval, and 55 percent disapproval of congressional Democrats, with 35 percent approval.

The Quinnipiac poll shows the president still has an edge in terms of whether the American people trust him to handle the economy and health care, but that margin is diminishing.

“The good news for President Barack Obama is that American voters still see him as better able to handle the economy and health care than Republicans in Congress. The bad news is his margins are shrinking,” said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

Also, check out Sarah Abruzzese’s piece in today’s paper about the impact of Obama’s falling poll numbers on the governor’s race in Virginia, where the president has only a 42 percent job approval rating.

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— Jon Ward, White House reporter, The Washington Times

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