Kimberly Cole was part of the coalition that voted in 2008 to make Barack Obama the 44th president and gave him another four years in 2012 to deliver on his promises of hope and change.
Now, the 36-year-old mother of three young children in Valencia, Calif., is among the majority of Americans who have lost confidence in Obama’s leadership and the job he is doing as president.
“He’s been faced with a lot of challenges, and he’s lost his way,” Cole said in an interview. She worries that Obama lacks the resolve needed at a time when things at home and abroad are looking scarier.
On the other side of the country, Karlene Richardson, 44, once counted herself a “very strong supporter” of the president. But now she feels much the same as Cole does.
“Honestly, I just feel that what I bought into is not what I’m getting,” said Richardson, an author and motivational speaker who teaches health-care administration at a community college in Queens. “I’m starting to wonder whether the world takes us seriously.”
Both Cole and Richardson were surveyed in the latest Washington Post-ABC News poll and represent one of its most striking findings: the degree to which the president’s approval has slipped among key parts of the Obama coalition — the women, youth and Latino voters most responsible for putting him into office.