Early reviews

EARLY REVIEWS…. Most of the reactions to President Obama’s speech last night and this morning seem pretty positive, but there’s often a disconnect between the observations of political observers and the public in general. How did the address play nationwide?

A CNN poll found a combined 92% of the country had a positive response to the president’s remarks.

A new national poll indicates that two-thirds of those who watched President Obama’s address to a joint session of Congress reacted favorably to his speech.

Sixty-eight percent of speech-watchers questioned in a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey Tuesday night had a very positive reaction to the president’s address, with 24 percent suggesting they had a somewhat positive response and 8 percent indicating they had a negative reaction.

CNN acknowledged that the sample was “8 to 10 points more Democratic than the general public.” However, when the majorities are this overwhelming — 85% said Obama made them more optimistic, 82% said they back Obama’s economic plan — the lean doesn’t matter as much. Subtract 8 to 10 points and the support is still very strong.

A CBS poll also offered encouraging numbers for the White House.

CBS News and Knowledge Networks held a nationally representative poll of 534 people who watched President Obama give his address to Congress to gauge their reaction in the minutes after the president’s speech.

Eighty percent of speech watchers approve of President Obama’s plans for dealing with the economic crisis. Before the speech, 63 percent approved.

All the usual caveats apply, of course. Polling immediately after a speech, with modest sample sizes, is tricky. But given Obama’s popularity going into last night, and the traditional bounce that comes with a State of the Union address*, the poll results sound about right.

* I know it wasn’t literally a State of the Union, but for all intents and purposes….

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