Poll: Public most optimistic since 2007

The American public is the most optimistic it has been about the state of the country since 2007, according to a poll released Tuesday, the day President Obama will deliver his State of the Union.

According to a CNN/Opinion Research survey, 43 percent believe things are going very or fairly well and 56 percent think things are going pretty or very badly. Even though less than half believe the country is in good shape, those are the highest numbers since April 2007, when George W. Bush was president.

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At the time, 48 percent believed things were going well and 51 percent believed they were going poorly. The last time more Americans gave a positive rating than a negative one was January 2007. 

The poll indicates that President Obama will be speaking to a different public when he delivers his State of the Union address Tuesday night. 

Obama is expected to focus heavily on the economic recovery in his speech. Some economists have improved their outlook for 2011, but the American public remains largely skeptical.

A CNN poll released last week showed that only 24 percent say the economy is in good shape, and 75 percent say it is in poor condition. But people's outlook has improved; the latter figure is the lowest it has been since August 2008.