Obama's approval rating soars during last days in office
President Barack Obama's time in office can now be counted in hours, not days. But while his time in the White House dwindles, the 44th president is seeing his approval rating skyrocket. A CBS News poll says 62 percent of Americans approve of how the president has handled his job.
The CBS poll ranks Obama among the highest rated presidents since the news organization started polling — behind only Bill Clinton (68 percent) and Ronald Reagan (also 68 percent).
The news outlet says most Americans approved of how Obama has handled the economy (60 percent) and foreign policy (56 percent) during his eight years in office.
But when CBS polled just Republicans, they found that 79 percent ranked the president as either average or poor and disapproved of how he handled the presidency during both his terms (68 percent).
Other outlets' polls on the outgoing president reflected the same sentiment from the general public. CNN showed 60 percent of Americans approved of President Obama's job in office, Gallup ranked it at 57 percent, and the Atlantic at 56 percent.
When President Obama took office back in 2009, the world was in economic crisis, and the United States was entrenched in two wars. As commander in chief, Obama has brought unemployment down nearly 3 percent, and the number of American troops in Iraq and Afghanistan are a fraction of what they were eight years ago, according to NBC News.
NBC News compiled data from different polls to compare the numbers Obama faced as an incoming president with what he leaves behind now. Among the data, the news organization found that the median household income is up by about $2,000, the Dow Jones average is up nearly 12,000 points, and the number of Americans living without health insurance is down 20 million.
But the statistics also found that the number of Americans receiving food stamps is up 13 million, and Americans living below the poverty level fell by only about half a million.
Overall, the Democratic Party isn't as strong as it was in 2009, either. Now, House Democrats hold only 194 seats compared with 256 in 2009. Senate Democratic seats are down to 48 from 58, too.
President Obama is now leaving these numbers — the good and the bad — in the hands of President-elect Donald Trump. Trump will be inaugurated as the 45th president of the United States tomorrow, January 20, 2017.