Poll: Minority approve of Obama energy policy

A new poll finds that President Obama’s approval ratings on energy policy are much worse than the marks he receives on environmental protection.

But the Gallup survey, conducted March 8-11 — before Obama’s high-profile, multi-state energy policy tour — and released Monday, shows that his ratings in both areas have been stable over two years.

Forty-two percent of adults surveyed say Obama is doing a good job improving the country’s energy policy, compared to the 41 percent Gallup polled in early March of 2011 and 43 percent in early March of 2010.

The results come as the White House seeks to counter constant GOP attacks over gasoline prices. Average nationwide prices are rising and were in the roughly $3.80-per-gallon range when the recent Gallup poll was conducted.

Prices were also heading upward when the poll was taken in early March of 2011, but were in the roughly $3.50-per-gallon range. Regular gasoline was averaging in the $2.70-to-$2.75-per-gallon range when the same survey occurred in 2010, according to federal Energy Information Administration data.

While well under 50 percent are happy with the way Obama is handling energy policy, the 42 percent who say he’s doing a good job represents a higher figure than in any year of George W. Bush’s presidency after 2002 — including Bush’s 2004 reelection year.

Separately, the newly released Gallup poll shows that 56 percent believe President Obama is doing a good job protecting the environment, compared to 55 percent in 2011 and 52 percent in 2010.

Gallup also asked whether respondents believe Obama is doing a good job or a poor job making America prosperous.

Forty-three percent say Obama is doing a good job, up from 36 percent in early March of 2011 and 38 percent a year before that.

In March of 2004, heading into then-President Bush’s reelection fight, 41 percent of respondents in the Gallup survey said Bush was doing a good job making the nation prosperous.

The new poll of 1,024 adults has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percent, according to Gallup.