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For Democrats, Candidate Attacks on Obama Are A Close Call

Front-runner Joe Biden’s Democratic presidential challengers have attacked him for policies enacted under President Obama with whom he served as vice president. Some Democrats complain that criticism of Obama is bad for the party, and Democratic voters are closely divided.

The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 42% of Likely Democratic Voters believe it is bad for their party when candidates criticize actions and policies during the Obama presidency. Only 26% say it’s good for the party, but 21% say it has no impact. Ten percent (10%) are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Blacks are less concerned about the attacks on the policies and actions of the first black president. Just 32% of black voters think these attacks are bad for the Democratic party. Twenty-three percent (23%) feel they are good for the party, while 34% say they have no impact. Eleven percent (11%) are not sure.

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Among all likely voters, 37% think it’s bad for the Democratic party when candidates criticize Obama era policies and actions. Twenty-three percent (23%) say it’s good for the party, and 30% say it has no impact. Eleven percent (11%) are undecided.

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The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on August 4-5, 2019 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

Fifty-seven percent (57%) of voters have a favorable opinion of Obama, with 37% who share a Very Favorable one. Forty percent (40%) view the man who served in the White House from January 2009 to January 2017 unfavorably, including 26% who view him Very Unfavorably.

These findings are virtually unchanged from May of last year. Voters were evenly divided at that time whether they wanted Obama back as president.

Obama is viewed favorably by 86% of blacks, 49% of whites and 67% of other minority voters.

Two-out-of-three Democrats (67%) have a Very Favorable opinion of Obama, compared to nine percent (9%) of Republicans and 31% of voters not affiliated with either major political party.

Among voters who have a Very Favorable view of the former president, 48% think it is bad for the Democratic party when candidates criticize actions and policies under Obama. Just 20% regard this criticism as good for the party. Twenty-one percent (21%) feel it has no impact.

Separate surveying finds that 32% of Democrats think it’s racism any time a white politician criticizes a politician of color.

With unemployment for black Americans at an historic low, voters continue to believe President Trump has been better for young blacks than Obama was.

Additional information from this survey and a full demographic breakdown are available to Platinum Members only.

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The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on August 4-5, 2019 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

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