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Inside Politics

Poll finds divided opinion of Bush's performance

Support for president's Iraq policy falls sharply



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(CNN) -- Americans appear divided over how well President Bush is handling his job as president, while support for his Iraq policy is slipping, according to a recent poll.

In addition, the CNN/Time poll showed that Bush didn't pick up significant support for his handling of the economy despite the robust March jobs report announced last week.

The telephone poll of 1,005 adult Americans was taken Thursday night. It had a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

It shows that 49 percent of those polled approve of the way the president is handling his job, while 47 percent do not.

The poll was taken after national security adviser Condoleezza Rice's testimony before the commission investigating the attacks of September 11, 2001. It also followed increased violence in Iraq. (Full story)

The approval rating for Bush's terrorism policy dipped from 58 percent in a CNN/Time poll taken two weeks ago to 55 percent now, within the margin of error.

A steeper decline can be seen in support for the president's handling of Iraq.

In the March 26-28 poll, 51 percent approved of Bush's handling of the war. In the most recent poll, 44 percent said they approve.

The economic numbers were virtually unchanged, with 41 percent expressing approval and 54 percent disapproval, both down 1 point.

On April 2, the Labor Department reported that the economy added 308,000 nonfarm jobs in March -- more than six times the growth reported one month earlier. (Full story)

When asked how things are going in the country, 51 percent answered "well" and 48 percent said "poorly."

Those numbers were significantly different from February, when 60 percent said things were going well and 39 percent said they were going poorly.


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