Obama gets thumbs up on Iraq, down on economy: Poll

US leader`s approval rating appears to have edged up after Iraq war speech.

Washington: US President Barack Obama`s approval rating appears to have edged up after his speech on the Iraq war but he still gets bad marks on the economy, according to a new poll.

The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released on Friday indicates that 50 percent of Americans approve of the job Obama`s doing as President, up from 47 percent in last month, with 49 percent disapproving, down two points from August.

Obama`s approval on how he`s handling the conflict in Iraq now stands at 57 percent, an eight point jump from July, according to the poll conducted on Wednesday and Thursday, after the President`s address announcing the end of US combat mission in Iraq.

"Obama`s decision to remove combat troops from Iraq is very popular," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.

"Only three in ten Americans say that the US should still have combat troops in Iraq, with 28 percent saying that this is the right time to remove them and another four in ten thinking that should have happened before now."

But the poll doesn`t suggest that the public`s optimistic about Iraq - most say that the remaining US troops will wind up in combat situations and that the Iraqi government won`t be able to maintain order once all US troops are removed.

"Only one in five think the war in Iraq is over, and the war itself remains very unpopular," adds Holland.

But the poll indicates that Americans still give the President poor marks on the economy, with four in ten giving him a thumbs up on the economy and nearly six in ten disapproving of his track record on the issue, which remains upmost in the minds of Americans.

"The fact that Iraq is not the most important issue to most Americans indicates that any advantage Obama gained as a result of his speech on Tuesday will be temporary," says Holland.

The poll also indicates more than eight in ten Democrats like Obama and more than eight in ten Republicans dislike him. His rating among independents, at 45 percent, is essentially unchanged since last month.

IANS

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