President Obama's slow ride down Gallup's daily presidential job approval index has finally passed below Jimmy Carter, earning Obama the worst job approval rating of any president at this stage of his term in modern political history.
Since March, Obama's job approval rating has hovered above Carter's, considered among the 20th century's worst presidents, but today Obama's punctured Carter's dismal job approval line. On their comparison chart, Gallup put Obama's job approval rating at 43 percent compared to Carter's 51 percent.
According to Gallup, here are the job approval numbers for other presidents at this stage of their terms, a year before the re-election campaign:
-- Harry S. Truman: 54 percent.
-- Dwight Eisenhower: 78 percent.
-- Lyndon B. Johnson: 44 percent.
-- Richard M. Nixon: 50 percent.
-- Ronald Reagan: 54 percent.
-- George H.W. Bush: 52 percent.
-- Bill Clinton: 51 percent.
-- George W. Bush: 55 percent.
Many pundits believe that job approval ratings are the key number to look at when determining if a president will win re-election. Generally, they feel that a president should be higher than 47 percent to win re-election.