According to Gallup's recent presidential job-approval rating, President Obama's 43 percent average last month ranks as one of the lowest for an elected president in November of his third year in office. Only one president had lower approval ratings than Obama 11 months before facing re-election -- and that president, Jimmy Carter, was soundly defeated.
In November 1979, Carter had a job-approval rating of 40 percent. His rating surged late that month because of a rally in support after the onset of the Iranian Hostage Crisis, and he averaged above 50 percent in December. But by March 1980, he was back in the 40-percent range. Several months later, his Republican opponent -- Ronald Reagan -- tallied 489 electoral votes to Carter's 49 and beat the incumbent president 50%-41% in the popular vote.
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