The president's approval rating remains high, but support for his policies -- especially his handling of healthcare -- is beginning to wane, according to a new poll.

About three-quarters of surveyed voters in Qunnipiac's latest survey, released Thursday morning, indicated they liked President Barack Obama on a personal level. But fewer than half said they approved of most of the policies he has pursued since taking office. Twenty percent said they did not look favorably on either Obama or his approach to addressing key issues.


One important source of consternation among polled voters seems to be the healthcare debate, according to Quinnipiac.

Slightly more than half disapprove of the way Obama so far handled that debate, and about three in 10 said they actually viewed the president less favorably as a result of his endorsement of House Democrats' healthcare bill, which the lower chamber approved earlier this month.

On a related note, about half surveyed also said they disliked House Democrats' healthcare plan. But almost six in 10 signaled they still preferred the inclusion of a public option in whatever reform bill Congress does pass, with independent voters more likely to support that idea than not.

That number, however, is down from just a month ago, but only by about four points, according to pollsters.

Support for an "opt out" public option, which Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) included in the bill he released yesterday, hovers at about 43 percent, according to the poll. But the "trigger" idea long floated by Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) fares no better, netting about 38 percent support.