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Poll: Only a Third Thinks Clinton Honest

By Keating Holland/CNN

WASHINGTON (Jan. 26) -- Only a third of all Americans think that President Bill Clinton is honest and trustworthy, and most believe he does not show good judgment, according to a new CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll.

Nonetheless, 70 percent approve of the way he is handling the economy, 62 percent give him high marks on the budget deficit, and 58 percent like how he is handling foreign policy.

That is one good reason why Clinton's overall approval rating remains high {currently at 60 percent] despite the growing controversy concerning his relationship with Monica Lewinsky. His high marks on the issues may also explain why Clinton reportedly will concentrate on such issues in his State of the Union speech tomorrow.

And despite the scandal, Clinton continues to hold an advantage over the GOP. Forty-nine percent of the public say that they want Clinton to have more influence over the direction the nation takes in the next year than the Republicans in Congress. Just 40 percent want the GOP to have more influence than Clinton.

Most Americans don't believe that Clinton shares their values, but they do think he is tough enough for the job and that he can get things done.

The poll of 874 adult Americans was conducted Saturday and Sunday and has a margin of error of +/-3.5 percentage points.

Here are the numbers:

Is Clinton Honest And Trustworthy?

Yes
No

Now
35%
58%
1997
49%
46%
Does Clinton Show Good Judgment?

Yes
No

42%
53%
Approve of How Clinton Is Handling...
Economy
Federal deficit
Foreign policy

70%
62%
58%
Clinton Approval Rating
Approve
Disapprove

60%
35%
Who Should Have More Influence Over Country?
Clinton
GOP Congress

49%
40%

Vice President Al Gore's approval rating is even higher than Clinton's. Fully 65 percent of the public approves of how Gore is handling his job as vice president. A surprisingly high number of Americans also approve of how Newt Gingrich is handling his job as speaker of the House; 46 percent approve of how the Georgia Republican is handling his job, a 19-point gain over the past year. Gingrich's gain, however, is entirely unrelated to the investigations into Clinton's personal life.

Gore Approval Rating
Approve
Disapprove

65%
19%
Gingrich Approval Rating

Approve
Disapprove

Now
46%
40%
1997
27%
59%

Below are updated figures for survey results first released on Sunday:

Allegations That Clinton Had An Affair With...

Monica Lewinsky
Other women (since Clinton became president...)

True
61%
62%
Not true
31%
27%
Allegations That Clinton...

Lied under oath
Tried to obstruct justice

True
56%
47%
Not true
35%
43%
Who Do You Tend To Believe More?
Bill Clinton
Monica Lewinsky

45%
41%
Is Clinton Covering Something Up?
Yes
No

51%
39%
Should Clinton Give a Speech Or Have a Press Conference?
Yes
No

65%
31%
Addressing Allegations In State of the Union Speech
Appropriate
Inappropriate

22%
75%
Starr Is Mostly Trying To...
Hurt Clinton politically
Find out the facts

48%
38%
Feelings Toward Monica Lewinsky
Sympathetic
Unsympathetic

39%
53%
Feelings Toward...

Hillary Clinton
Bill Clinton
Bill Clinton

Sympathetic
70%
49%
39%
Unsympathetic
27%
48%
53%
Clinton's Presidency
Success
Failure

70%
26%
Impeach Clinton If He Lied Under Oath?
Favor
Oppose

47%
48%
Impeach Clinton If He Tried To Obstruct Justice?
Favor
Oppose

47%
47%
Effect of Scandal On Clinton's Ability to Serve as President
No harm at all
Temporary harm
Permanent harm
Will not remain in office

11%
42%
28%
16%
In Other News

Monday Jan. 26, 1998

Lewinsky Has Spoken
White House Crisis Spawns Media Feeding Frenzy
First Lady Ignores Scandal During Visit to N.Y. School
Business As Usual At White House, Officials Say
Lewinsky Allegations Overshadow State Of The Union
Hatch Sees Resignation Probable Should Charges be Proven
White House Scandal At A Glance
Starr Said To Be Using Tested Tactic Against Ex-intern
Allegations Of Previous Affair, Forgery Haunt Lewinsky

Poll:
Only A Third Thinks Clinton Honest
Clinton Wrong, But Should Stay In Office