Obama, GOP get low marks on handling of federal budget

The CNN/ORC poll released Monday found that only 31 percent of those surveyed approve of how Obama is handling the federal budget, while 67 percent disapprove.

Those numbers are still better than congressional Republicans, according to the poll. Nineteen percent said they approve of Republicans' handling of the federal budget, while 79 percent disapprove.

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When asked whether they would prefer Obama's approach to handling the budget or congressional Republicans, voters are split. Forty-seven percent said they prefer Obama's approach and 46 percent said they prefer Republicans.

The poll’s findings come as both the House and Senate prepare to vote on their budget proposals this week.

The Senate proposal from Budget Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-Wash.) would raise $1 trillion in new taxes and institute additional stimulus spending. The House will vote on Budget Chairman Paul Ryan’s (R-Wis.) plan which cuts spending by $5.7 trillion over the next decade and would balance in 10 years.

Neither the House GOP or Senate Democrats budget is likely to win support from lawmakers of the opposing party.

President Obama, however, has yet to release a budget, with the White House saying it will “probably” be ready in April. This is the fourth year in the last five that Obama has not submitted a budget on time.

The House will likely vote on a number of additional budget proposals as amendments to the Ryan plan. House Democrats today also released their 2014 budget proposal, which includes $1.2 trillion in new taxes and roughly $200 billion in stimulus spending.

In recent weeks Obama has held private meetings with Democratic and Republican lawmakers in the House and the Senate in order to move closer toward bipartisan compromises on many key issues, including the deficit, guns, immigration reform, and job creation.

The CNN/ORC poll found that more voters think Obama is not doing enough to court Republicans compared to those who think he is doing enough. Forty-two percent said Obama is doing enough, while 56 said he is not doing enough.

The latest findings are a shift compared to the poll's results for November 2012, where 45 percent said Obama was doing enough to reach out, with 49 percent saying the president was not doing enough.

The poll's findings included a silver lining for Obama. Fifty-seven percent agreed that Obama has the "personality and leadership qualities a president should have." Forty-two percent disagreed with that statement.

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On guns, the views of those surveyed are essentially unchanged from polling done just after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting massacre in Newtown, Conn. in December. The shooting resulted in 28 dead and since then many lawmakers have called for federal action to reduce gun violence. Obama and some Democrats have urged Congress to pass legislation reinstating a federal assault weapons ban and universal background checks on gun purchases.

The CNN/ORC poll found that 17 percent think there should be no restrictions on owning guns, up from 13 percent in December. Thirty-eight percent said there should be "minor" restrictions on owning guns, an increase of 5 percentage points. And 31 percent backed "major restrictions" on owning guns, a decrease of 6 percentage points.

The poll was conducted March 15 to 17 among 1,021 adults nationwide. Thirty-three percent identified as Democrats, 25 identified as Republicans and 43 said they were independents. The margin of error for the questions reported on above was plus or minus 3 percentage points.

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