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AP Poll: Americans high on Obama, direction of US.

Photo Credit: Obama for America

A new AP poll released today found for the first time in nearly five years there are more Americans who believe the country is on the "right track" than who do not. This is a sign that the steps President Obama has taken to lay a foundation for change and long-term economic recovery since taking office nearly 100 days ago are inspiring hopes for a brighter future, says AP.

The "right track" number topped "wrong direction" for a few months after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, according to non-AP media polls, and for several months late in the Clinton administration.

So far, Obama has defied the odds by producing a sustained trend toward optimism. It began with his election.

In October 2008, just 17 percent said the country was headed in the right direction. After his victory, that jumped to 36 percent. It dipped a bit in December but returned to 35 percent around the time of his inauguration and has headed upward since.

The AP-GfK poll suggests that 64 percent of the public approves of Obama’s job performance, down just slightly from 67 percent in February. President George W. Bush’s approval ratings hovered in the high 50s after his first 100 days in office.

Most Americans say it’s too soon to tell whether he’s delivered on his promise to change Washington. But twice as many say Obama is living up to his promises as those who say he’s not (30 percent to 15 percent).

Worries about losing their jobs, facing major medical expenses, seeing investments dive and paying their bills remain high among Americans, the poll shows, just slightly lower than two months ago.

Still, seven in 10 Americans say it is reasonable to expect it to take longer than a year to see the results of Obama’s economic policies.

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