Thursday, June 11, 2009

Hey Obama: Americans Say Your Takeover Of GM Sucks!

image by rees

from Fox News
June 11, 2009

Most Americans are unhappy with the actions the federal government has taken with General Motors, and people are uncertain about GM's future -- even with the government's help, according to a FOX News poll released Thursday.

Considering economic conditions overall, most people say things haven't been this bad since the Great Depression. Views are split, however, over whether the economy is getting better or worse.

By 58 percent to 38 percent voters across the country say they disapprove of the government takeover and majority ownership stake in General Motors. Majorities of Republicans (79 percent) and independents (59 percent) think it was a bad move, as well as a sizable minority of Democrats (39 percent).

And by an 8 percentage point margin slightly more Americans think the government should have let the market decide GM's fate (52 percent) than believe it was in the country's best interest to save the car maker (44 percent).

A majority of Democrats (62 percent) support the government intervening in GM, while majorities of Republicans (72 percent) and independents (54 percent) back letting market forces decide.

Does the government takeover mean GM will get back on track? When asked to look five years down the road, about half of Americans think the company will be profitable (22 percent) or breaking even (32 percent). Others are more pessimistic, including about one in five (21 percent) who think GM will be out of business, and 17 percent think it will still be losing money.

Among Democrats, who are more likely to support the government takeover, nearly a third think GM will either be gone (15 percent) or still showing red ink (13 percent).

Opinion Dynamics Corp. conducted the national telephone poll of 900 registered voters for FOX News from June 9 to June 10. The poll has a 3-point error margin.

Labor unions have been front and center in the government's rescue of GM -- and Chrysler as well. The largest number of Americans -- 43 percent -- think labor unions have too much influence on the Obama administration, 29 percent say the right amount and 12 percent too little influence.

Economic Conditions

The public is split on how things are going today, as about equal numbers say the economy is getting better (40 percent) as say it is getting worse (42 percent). Even this question reveals a partisan divide: Half of Democrats (50 percent) say things are getting better -- that's almost double the number of Republicans (27 percent) who feel the same way. A 57 percent majority of Republicans say things are getting worse. Independents split: 41 percent better and 41 percent worse.

Similarly, when asked if the government stimulus spending is working, 46 percent of Americans say yes, while almost as many people -- 39 percent -- say no. Three months ago sentiments were reversed, as 38 percent thought government actions were working and 44 percent disagreed (3-4 March 2009).

Nearly two-thirds of Americans (65 percent) think the country is in the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.

Do the tough times make you more appreciative for what you have? You bet -- 84 percent say they feel more grateful these days. Only 9 percent are "angry" they don't have as much as they used to have.

Among the car companies tested, Ford -- which has not taken government bailout money -- has the highest favorable rating at 72 percent, followed by Honda at 69 percent favorable. Just under half of Americans have a positive view of General Motors (48 percent) and Chrysler (46 percent).

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