10/26/2010 - Two years ahead of the next presidential election, the public is divided over whether Barack Obama should run for a second term as president. About half (47%) say they would like to see Obama run again in 2012, while 42% say they would not. This is better than the outlook for Ronald Reagan in August 1982; at that point, just 36% of the public said they wanted to see Reagan – who subsequently went on to win his second term by an 18-point margin – run for reelection.
The latest Pew Research/National Journal Congressional Connection poll, sponsored by SHRM, conducted October 21-24 among 1,006 adults, finds that the 47% who currently say they would like Obama to run again is comparable to public opinion about Bill Clinton on a similar question following the 1994 midterm elections (44% thought Clinton should seek the 1996 Democratic nomination, 47% did not).
Opinions about whether Obama should run again reflect his overall approval rating. In the most recent Pew Research Center survey, 46% approved of Obama’s job performance. This was also the case for Clinton in December 1994, shortly after that year’s midterm elections (41% approval).
Read the full report Midterm Snapshot: Enthusiasm for Obama Reelection Bid Greater Than for Reagan in 1982 on the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press' Web site.