Trump’s approval ratings sink to new low
In the ABC-Washington Post poll conducted this month, Trump’s approval rating plunged to 36% from 42% in April — the lowest for any president in recent history.world Updated: Jul 16, 2017 20:49 IST
Buffeted by the Russia probe, perception of a declining world role and a stalled domestic agenda, US President Donald Trump’s approval rating has hit a new low, according to a new poll.
In the ABC-Washington Post poll conducted this month, Trump’s approval rating plunged to 36% from 42% in April — the lowest for any president in recent history. Meanwhile, his disapproval numbers rose to 58%, with an overall 48% of respondents saying they “strongly disapproved” of his performance in office.
Almost half of the respondents — 48% — said they felt their country’s leadership of the world had declined on Trump’s watch, and just over a third of them said they trusted him in foreign negotiations, even less when it came to Russia.
This level of unpopularity was never reached by preceding presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, and George W Bush came somewhat close only in his second term. The last president to match Trump’s ratings was Gerald Ford at 39%, but way back in 1975.
Some media outlets went as far as to say Trump’s low approval ratings were the worst in 70 years for any president after six months in office, and one publication said it was the worst ever for any White House incumbent at this stage.
Trump, who is known to keep a close eye on polls, responded with predictable scorn, tweeting that the ABC-Washington Post polls were “just about the most inaccurate poll around election time”. He did note, taking some satisfaction from the findings though, that “almost 40% is not bad at this time”.
However, there was a big positive for Trump in the poll — 43% of the respondents marked him positively on the performance of the economy on his watch, to 41% negatives. The stock market has indeed been doing well and jobs numbers are beginning to look good, thanks in no small measure to continued improvement in the economy that started during Obama’s term.
But the ongoing Russia controversy is taking a toll. Though responses split along partisan lines, the poll found that 60% of Americans believe Russia interfered in the presidential election, and 44% thought Trump benefitted from it, while nearly 40% said they thought the Trump campaign might have colluded in it.