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Obama approval ratings down amid political flaps

01 june 2013, 12:02
0
US President Barack Obama. ©AFP
US President Barack Obama. ©AFP
President Barack Obama's approval ratings took a hit over the past month as he wrestled with controversies over the IRS, Benghazi and the secret seizure of journalists' phone records, AFP reports citing a poll.

The Quinnipiac poll found that 49 percent of those surveyed had a negative opinion of Obama's job performance while 45 percent approved.

Those numbers were the near inverse of a poll on May 1 that found 48 percent approved of the job he was doing, while 45 percent did not.

The erosion in support tracked with a series of political tempests that have put Obama on the defensive on a variety of fronts.

The Internal Revenue Service, which collects US taxes, admitted May 10 that it had inappropriately singled out for extra scrutiny conservative Tea Party groups seeking tax-exempt status.

The administration's handling of the September 11 attack on the US mission in Benghazi, Libya also was back in the news, with a leak of internal emails and congressional hearings.

Republicans have long accused the administration of deliberately playing down the attack, which killed four Americans including the ambassador, initially portraying it as a spontaneous reaction to an anti-Muslim video.

The administration also has been on the defensive over revelations that the Justice Department secretly seized the phone records of Associated Press reporters as part of a leak investigation.

The disclosure that a Fox News reporter's emails also were seized in another leak investigation added fuel to the fire.

Quinnipiac said a majority of those surveyed had a negative opinion of Obama's handling of all three matters, with 51 percent giving a thumbs down on Benghazi and the IRS, and 55 percent in the AP case.

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