April 3, 2018

Poll Watch: A Little Bit of Good News

I was intrigued by a headline noting something about Americans are not hating the president as much as we used to, so I followed the link until I got to the source: a recent CNN/SSRS poll, taken via cell and land line phones March 22 - 25.

Here's what apparently drove the headline: Trump's approval rating is now 42%, up three percent from the January poll. And while his overall approval rating is better on this poll than it has been since early March 2017, there is still some room for improvement.

For example, 48% approve of how he's handling the economy, but:
  • only 39% approve of how he's handling the foreign affairs;
  • only 36% approve of how he's handling gun policy;
  • 47% think he's been too easy on Russia; and
  • only 38% approve of how he's handling foreign trade.
On that Russia question, 4% think he's been too tough on them -- I'm guessing those are the Mueller witnesses?

The questions get a little more interesting, delving into what the respondents thing about certain characteristics and how those might apply to the president.
  • cares about people like you: 56% disagree; 42% agree
  • can bring about change the country needs: 52% disagree, 45% agree
  • is honest and trustworthy: 59% disagree, 36% agree
  • can manage the government effectively: 57% disagree, 40% agree
  • will unite us, not divide us: 60% disagree: 30% agree
  • someone we can be proud of having as president: 59% to 38%
All six of those have swung in Trump's favor since the last time the questions were asked. A new question appeared on this survey, asking whether people think Trump respects the rule of law. The answer is no: 58% disagree, and only 38% agree.

Here are a few questions related to Trump's Cabinet members and whether they are more or less likely than Cabinet members of other presidents.  According to respondents, Trump's folks are more likely to misuse taxpayer money, less likely to be well qualified for their jobs, less likely to bring a fresh perspective, less likely to understand our needs, more likely to use their position for personal gain, and equally likely to cut spending and government waste. 

There are also a couple of questions related to the women of Trump - Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal - which show that 63% of respondents believe the women, and 51% believe that the should be able to talk about their relationships with Trump, even though they've been paid to be quiet.

There's a lot of detail in the survey, much of it consistent with what we've seen in other surveys: Republicans and men are his strongest demographics, many times being the outliers, the only groups that are on his side, across a variety of questions.

We'll have to see whether this slight positive trend for Trump continues, and if his collection of Red man friends will be enough to keep him in the tippy-top shape house or building or whatever you call it on Pennsylvania Ave. 

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