Poll: Two-thirds think stimulus was a 'waste'

Over two-thirds of Americans believe that President Obama's signature stimulus bill was a waste, a new poll found Tuesday.

Sixty-eight percent of Americans said they think the $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) was a "waste," compared to just 29 percent who think the money was well-spent, according to an ABC/Washington Post poll released Tuesday morning.

The figure suggests that the cornerstone of the Obama administration's agenda to bolster the economy has fallen flat with voters as elections loom in four weeks. The poll also hints that the White House's effort to sell the bill to the public has been far from successful.

Republicans have hammered Democrats who supported the stimulus over the last 20 months, accusing them of wasting money while not creating jobs, while Democrats claim that hundreds of thousands more jobs would have been lost had the stimulus not been enacted.

The legislation has become such a boondoggle for some Democrats that it remains a potent political weapon against some of their candidates. One veteran lawmaker, Rep. Chet Edwards (D-Texas), suggested that his support for the stimulus could cost him his reelection this November.

Adding to Democrats' woes are Americans' deep, lingering concerns about the economy. Just 9 percent of U.S. adults said they think the economy is excellent or good, compared to a net 90 percent who assert the economy is either not good or poor.

Furthermore, less than a third of adults, who will make up this fall's crucial voting base, said they think the economy is getting better. Thirty-one percent said the economy is improving, 37 percent said it's staying the same, and 32 percent said the economy is getting worse.

The poll, conducted Sept. 30-Oct. 3, has a 3.5 percent margin of error.