Participants in an unscientific straw poll conducted by the Washington Blade at the Capital Pride festival on June 8 gave President Barack Obama an overall job approval rating of 77 percent, a significantly higher rating than he received in a Gallup Poll conducted June 8-10.
Among the 319 mostly LGBT people who participated in the Blade poll, 21 percent expressed disapproval of the president’s job performance and 2 percent had no opinion.
According to the Gallup daily tracking poll on Obama’s job approval for the period of June 8-10, 46 percent of the approximately 1,500 people nationwide contacted by phone said they approved of the president’s job performance, compared to 47 percent who expressed disapproval. Seven percent had no opinion.
The most recent Gallup tracking poll for the period of June 12-14 — in the midst of the deteriorating military situation in Iraq — shows the president’s approval rating dropped to 40 percent and his disapproval rating rose to 55 percent, with 5 percent having no opinion.
In a separate question in the Blade’s Pride festival poll, participants were asked to rate Obama’s job performance specifically on LGBT issues. Forty-three percent rated his performance on LGBT issues as “excellent,” 38 percent rated his performance as “good,” 15 percent rated him as “fair” on LGBT issues, and 4 percent gave him a “poor” rating on those issues.
With attention among many political observers turning to the 2016 U.S. presidential election, the Blade’s Pride poll asked participants to express their current preference for one of 11 political figures – both Democrats and Republicans – who are believed to be considering running for president in 2016.
Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton emerged as the choice of a lopsided 65 percent of the straw poll participants. The category of “undecided” came in second place, with 21 percent of those participating indicating they weren’t ready to commit to a candidate.
U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) came in a distant third, with 6 percent expressing support for her.
The remaining potential 2016 presidential candidates included in the Blade straw poll received 3 percent or less:
• Vice President Joseph Biden (D) – 3 percent
• Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) – 0.3 percent
• Gov. Martin O’Malley (D-Md.) – 1 percent
• Former Gov. Jeb Bush (R-Fla.) – 0.6 percent
• Gov. Chris Christie (R-N.J.) – 2 percent
• Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ken.) – 1 percent
• Former Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.) – 0.3 percent
• Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) – 0.3 percent
• Former Gov. Jon Huntsman (R-Utah) – 0.3 percent
The support expressed for Clinton in the Blade straw poll is consistent with anecdotal reports from LGBT activists throughout the country that Clinton enjoys strong support in the LGBT community.
The 319 participants in the Blade’s presidential approval and 2016 presidential preference straw poll represent a sample too small to statistically represent the sentiment of the more than 100,000 people who attended the June 8 Capital Pride festival.