Healthcare Debate Weighing Obama Down

President Obama is seeing his chances for healthcare reform dwindle.

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Pollster John Zogby regularly updates our ObamaMeter. Each week, Zogby uses his polling, expert analysis, and interaction with major players to come up with a rating of between 1 and 100. The ObamaMeter, however, is not simply a poll-generated job approval number. Instead, the Washington Whispers ObamaMeter is Zogby's judgment on the performance of the president based on multiple factors.

"All in all, it was a bad week on the ObamaMeter. The White House created confusion on the public health insurance option with mixed signals on its plans. That has hurt him in a number of ways. Obama looks weak and not in control of the healthcare debate and has set himself up to appear beholden to the liberal base. He may get a healthcare reform bill, but whatever passes will be partisan, something Obama wanted to avoid. It seems clear now that Democrats and Republicans were never going to reach consensus. The most hopeful event this week is New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson's meeting with two North Korean diplomats and the possibility that this could be a sign of new dialogue with North Korea."

This week: Drops to 73.

Last week's rating: 78

John Zogby is president and CEO of Zogby International, a public opinion, research, and business solutions firm with experience in more than 70 countries. Founded and led by Zogby since 1984, Zogby International specializes in telephone, Internet, and face-to-face survey research and analysis for corporate, political, nonprofit, and governmental clients. The firm is headquartered in Utica, N.Y. John Zogby is also the author of The Way We'll Be: The Zogby Report on the Transformation of the American Dream (Random House).

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