Daniel Doherty

New Hampshire’s annual State of the State poll conducted and produced by Dartmouth College is filled with all sorts of interesting data points. Chief among them, however, is how unpopular President Obama has become in the Granite State over the past 12 months.

A few stats from the survey:

Personal Favorability: Usually the president’s strong suit, since last year his favorability rating has dropped 13.2 percentage points to just 27.8 percent. Meanwhile, his unfavorable rating has increased markedly from 39.1 percent to 49.4 percent.

Job Approval: President Obama’s job approval rating (35.8 percent) has plummeted nine percentage points since 2013. Similarly, his disapproval rating is on the rise as well -- sitting at 54.3 percent (a 12.2 percent net increase since 2013).

Some food for thought via the pollsters: “President Obama’s favorability and job approval declined among Democrats, Republicans, and independents.”

Health Care: Support for the president's health care law (34/57) is deeply underwater in New Hampshire. And by a double-digit margin, more independents now disapprove of the law than say they approve of it. The pollsters write, “Only five percent of Republicans approve, with 91 percent disapproving. More Democrats approve of Obamacare (66 percent) than disapprove (22 percent). Fewer independents approve of Obamacare (36 percent) than disapprove (54 percent).”

Of course, the president will never face voters again. But as we’ve written time and again, an incumbent president’s low approval ratings can seriously drag down his party’s congressional and senate candidates during midterm elections. For instance, the US Senate race in New Hampshire is already becoming something of a nail biter. Yes, Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) leads overall (and among independents, too) but her edge over Scott Brown is razor-thin at best; the survey falls within the sample’s margin of error:

 photo brownshaheen_zps60aff396.png

If the president’s numbers don't improve or get worse, expect this race to grow ever tighter, in part because so many registered voters are undecided.


Daniel Doherty

Daniel Doherty is Townhall's Deputy News Editor. Follow him on Twitter @danpdoherty.

Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography