As I wrote, they think he's doing a lousy job. 65% of those polled think the country is on the wrong track.
I don't know where you're getting your approval/disapproval figures from but they are likely to be the very best for Obama out there. Gallup as of the week of 10/6/14 has 41% Approve; 55% Disapprove
Even using Gallup's results some of the folks who think the country is on the wrong track must believe it's not Obama's fault and that he's doing the best he can, but regardless, a 65% wrong track number is very high.
Over the last several months there has been one screw-up after another and one crisis after another. As respects the latter, some of this is simply the way the world turns. Obama didn't create ISIS, he didn't make Putin invade Crimea he didn't personally contaminate the bush meat that probably started the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, but in each case, as with virtually every other significant matter the American people are being confronted with, either the president or members of his Administration have done something or have failed to do something that has led to the crisis or made it worse.
His personal demeanor isn't helping him either. Whether it's because he is a deliberate deep thinker whose heart beats more slowly than the rest of ours or because he's over his head or even bored, he appears detached and unconcerned by the things that do concern the average American. In times of trouble, most people want their leaders to appear confident and under control, but clearly Obama, in terms of his appearance, has crossed that line into looking unfocused and not in charge.
Playing golf after the first ISIS beheading was a huge blunder, and you can't feel sorry for the guy that a photographer caught him yukking it up with Alfonso Mourning as the parents of the murdered American were giving a press conference. Obviously presidents need some down-time, but they don't need to be clueless as to when and when not to take it.
It's election season and during these periods all presidents are going to be raising money for their party, but whether it only appears to be the case or it is true, Obama seems to be doing very little as president other than attending fund-raisers, and they always seem to be scheduled for the day after a crisis breaks in the news. This is either bad timing or a function of just how often he attends these things.
It appears that, finally, one of his political advisers has told him or convinced him he should take a pass while the news is filled with reports of new Ebola cases, but everything can't be blamed on his staff. He has a brain of his own and he should be able to use it to tell him what looks bad. Just another way that people can develop the impression that he is out of touch and disengaged.
Plus after six years, a lot of people who used to like him are now sick of his mug and his voice. His responses to questions are so patterned it's easy for his critics to create video clip montages that make him look foolish. This happens to one degree or another with all presidents, but his problems extend beyond simple Obama fatigue.
I don't see things getting any better for him either.
Unless he gets a miraculous break on the global front I really can't imagine him turning this trend around. The problem for him (and us) is that if it is true that he is seen by the rest of the world as weak and indecisive (and I think it is), it will only lead to more foreign policy crises not less. If the Republicans takes the Senate, as it appears they will , his only chances of getting anything
done on the domestic front will require an entirely new, for him, approach to dealing with the opposition or even more ballsy executive actions. I'm betting he goes with the latter rather than the former and while his core base and single interest groups may love such action, I don't think it plays well with moderates and independents.
By the time his second term is over, his approval rating is going to be even lower and there will be a lot of pundits pondering the question of how and why he squandered the huge opportunity he was given.