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Obama Says He Could Win Again - True or False?

Friday, July 31, 2015

In a recent speech criticizing African political leaders who stay too long in office, President Obama said he could win a third term if he ran for president again but acknowledged that U.S. law does not allow it. Could Obama win again?

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that just 30% of Likely U.S. Voters say they would vote for the president if he ran for a third term. Sixty-three percent (63%) would not. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Most Democrats (57%) would vote to give Obama a third term. Ninety-three percent (93%) of Republicans, 68% of voters not affiliated with either major party - and 32% of Democrats - would not.

Obama defeated Republican nominee John McCain by a 53% to 46% margin in 2008 and was reelected with 51% of the vote against GOP candidate Mitt Romney in 2012.

An amendment to the U.S. Constitution prohibits presidential candidates from being elected to more than two four-year terms. Nineteen percent (19%) of all voters believe that amendment should be changed so presidents can serve longer. Seventy-eight percent (78%) oppose such a change.

Interestingly, only 32% of Democrats support changing this amendment. Ninety percent (90%) of GOP voters and 82% of unaffiliateds are opposed.

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The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on July 28-29, 2015 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

Obama’s daily job approval rating continue to hover in the negative mid-teens as they have for most of his presidency. 

Majorities of voters across most demographic groups oppose changing the Constitution to allow presidents to serve more than two terms and would not vote for Obama if he ran for a third term.

The older the voter, the less likely he or she is to say they would vote for Obama.

Most black voters (54%), however, would change the constitutional amendment. Just 10% of whites and 38% of other minority voters agree.

Sixty-nine percent (69%) of black voters would vote to elect Obama to a third term, compared to 22% of white voters and 39% of other minority voters.

Among voters who favor changing the Constitution to allow presidents to serve more than two terms, 74% would vote for Obama if he ran again.

Eighty-nine percent (89%) of all voters want to continue using the Constitution as the fundamental law of the United States, and 59% say legislators should leave it alone

Just over half (51%) of voters think Obama has been less faithful to the U.S. Constitution than his predecessors in the Oval Office.

Voters continue to overwhelmingly favor term limits for members of Congress but don’t expect legislators to meet this demand.

Additional information from this survey and a full demographic breakdown are available to Platinum Members only.

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We conduct public opinion polls on a variety of topics to inform our audience on events in the news and other topics of interest. To ensure editorial control and independence, we pay for the polls ourselves and generate revenue through the sale of subscriptions, sponsorships, and advertising. Nightly polling on politics, business and lifestyle topics provides the content to update the Rasmussen Reports web site many times each day. If it's in the news, it's in our polls. Additionally, the data drives a daily update newsletter and various media outlets across the country.

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To learn more about our methodology, click here.