PRINCETON, N.J. -- Throughout President Barack Obama's sixth full year in office, an average of 79% of Democrats, compared with 9% of Republicans, approved of the job he was doing. That 70-percentage-point party gap in approval ratings ties for the fifth-most-polarized year for a president in Gallup records dating back to 1953.
Each of Obama's six years in office rank among the 10 most polarized in the last 60 years, with George W. Bush holding the other four spots. Bush's most polarized years were his fourth through seventh years in office, after the rally in support for him following the 9/11 terror attacks had faded. Clearly, political polarization has reached new heights in recent years, under a Republican and a Democratic president.
So far in his presidency, there has been an average party gap of 70 points in Obama's approval ratings, which, if it continues, would be easily the highest for any president to date. Bush is second with a 61-point gap throughout his presidency, followed by Clinton (56) and Reagan (52). The other presidents had party gaps of no more than 41 points
Average gap in Presidential approval rating--
Obama most polarizing by far.