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62% Consider Clinton Better President Than Obama

Friday, November 15, 2013

Voters still strongly believe Bill Clinton was a better president than Barack Obama.

The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 62% of Likely U.S. Voters think Clinton was a better president. Just 20% believe Obama is doing a better job than Clinton did when he was president from 1993 to 2001. Eighteen percent (18%) are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

These findings have changed little from September of last year when only 44% of voters felt Clinton and Obama had similar views on how to fix the economy. Most voters trusted Clinton’s economic judgment more than Obama’s and that of Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney.

Sixty-nine percent (69%) of Republicans and 70% of voters not affiliated with either of the major parties pick Clinton over Obama when asked to choose between the two Democratic presidents. Among Democrats, Clinton’s the favorite, too, but by a much narrower 49% to 37% margin.

Overall views of Clinton have changed little over the last four years.

Clinton made headlines in recent days for urging Obama to keep his promise that people can keep their existing health insurance plans even if they don’t meet the standards of the new national health care law. The president yesterday granted a one-year extension to existing health insurance policies that don’t comply with Obamacare.

Looking ahead, a plurality (41%) of voters still believes that the former president is a plus for Hillary Clinton’s hopes for the White House, although that’s down slightly from 45% in August 2009. But only 20% now consider Clinton a minus as far as his wife’s presidential ambitions are concerned, compared to 29% who felt that way in the previous survey. Thirty-two percent (32%) say he will have no impact on her bid for the presidency.

Seventy percent (70%) of Democratic voters now say they would vote for Hillary Clinton to be their party’s presidential nominee in 2016 if their state primary were held today.

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The national telephone survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted by Rasmussen Reports on November 13-14, 2013. The margin of sampling error for the survey is +/- 2 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Fieldwork for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

Fifty-eight percent (58%) of voters still view Bill Clinton favorably, while 40% share an unfavorable view of the former president. This includes 28% with a Very Favorable opinion and 20% with a Very Unfavorable one.

Twenty-eight percent (28%) regard Clinton as one of the best presidents ever, but 11% consider him one of the worst chief executives ever. Fifty-eight percent (58%) rate him somewhere in between.

Twenty-seven percent (27%) of voters say their opinion of Clinton has gotten better since he left office, while 11% say their view of him has worsened. Sixty percent (60%) say their opinion has stayed about the same.

Seventy-seven percent (77%) of black voters have a favorable opinion of Clinton, but just 24% think he is a better president than Obama. Only 54% of white voters view Clinton favorably, but 68% regard him as a better president than the current chief executive. Sixty-seven percent (67%) of other minority voters have a favorable opinion of the former president, and 62% think he did a better job than Obama is doing.

Thirty-six percent (36%) of Democrats say their opinion of Clinton has gone up since he left office, compared to 13% of Republicans and 30% of unaffiliated voters.

Thirty-seven percent (37%) of Americans said in February 2011 that Ronald Reagan was the most influential president in the last 50 years. John F. Kennedy was a distant second with 21%, closely followed by Clinton who earned 19% support.

If the 2016 presidential election were held today, 43% of voters would choose Hillary Clinton, while 41% would vote for Republican Chris Christie.

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

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