Trump’s Base of support in July 2017
Here at National Compass, we are frequently tracking how Donald Trump’s presidency is trending, looking for signifiers that may indicate a shift in the national outlook towards him. So far the baseline numbers are holding steady although not favorably for the President.
The latest Washington Post / ABC News poll shows President Donald Trump’s approval ratings remaining at 36 percent as they have been for several months at this point. As a point of comparison, George W. Bush and Barack Obama, in the same poll at the same approximately first 6 months of their presidencies, were both running at 59 percent. This is a striking difference. In Bush’s case, it was pre-9/11. No president has had lower ratings at this point in the last 70 years.
The WaPo ABC poll delves further into the complex data of opinion regarding Trump. For example, his ratings with those who identify as Republicans. 82 percent of respondents that claim GOP affiliation, approve of Trump’s performance, but it is the number within the number that reveals some erosion. Of the 82 percent, only 62 percent of Republicans “strongly approve” of Trump.
As we drill down into the data, more specificity emerges. The poll reports that compared Trump with previous presidents, 23 percent think “Trump is doing a better job than most.” Though a scant 17 percent say he’s doing a “much better” job, 38 percent think he’s doing “much worse.”
All but a minority of those surveyed think Trump should knock off with the Tweeting. Two thirds agree his social media activities are a detriment to his job performance, and 53 percent “strongly agree”. Of the 24 percent that approve of Trump’s twitter antics, only 13 percent applaud it.
Do they believe Trump is “Presidential”? The majority do not. 24 percent say that, since taking office, Trump has “acted in a way that’s fitting and proper for a president of the United States.” Seventy percent, on the other hand, say Trump has acted in a way that is “unpresidential.” Isn’t there a 70% rule in politics, or something close to it?
Trump’s and Trump Jr.’s Russian Collusion Problems
Among the many things Trump’s White House advisers and political consultants should be concerned about, is the finding that only 26% think Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting with the Russian lawyer and another individual trafficking in Russian influence in the United States, was appropriate – and only half of Republicans think so.
Despite all of the bluster from Trump during the campaign about his negotiating prowess, two thirds are not confident in his abilities in that department. 73% disagree with the statement that “America’s leadership in the world has gotten stronger” under Trump.
And then, the poll which took a sample of over 1,000 adults, with an error margin of plus / minus 3.5 – asked this question. “Would you say that the more you hear about Trump, the more you like him? Or the more you hear about Trump, the less you like him?”
The result was that roughly 3 in 10 adults said more. Nearly 6 in 10 said less.
Enthusiastic Support Dwindles
What is the biggest takeaway from this poll? Solid support for Trump is dwindling. At this point, Trump’s average enthusiastic support now stands at 25 percent. When we talk about his “base” – that is what we are talking about – just one quarter of Americans.
Naturally, Trump must respond on Twitter, even though a majority believe it is mistaken and counter-productive, not to mention generally unpresidential to do so. Trump responded to the poll, saying his approval rating, which he opted to round up to 40%, is “not bad at this time”. Then he bad mouthed the poll itself.
The problem (for Trump) is that the poll is consistent with numerous other polls conducted since he entered the White House – with the possible exception of various unscientific polls – “Drudge Report”?; and other online surveys on sites that are regular destinations only for staunch Trump supporters.
So much winning.