Trump’s Approval Numbers Grow

Following a week where the President was attacked for his summit with Vladimir Putin Trump’s job approval numbers apparently grew.

According to Town Hall:

When I wrote last week that President Trump’s capitulatory press conference with Vladimir Putin was a low moment in his tenure thus far, I wasn’t out on a limb.  Trump’s equivocations prompted rebukes from scores of Congressional Republicans, as well as critiques from a number of national figures who are typically supporters and allies.  Trump’s secret sauce, however, is that the more he’s attacked, the more Republican voters feel compelled to circle the wagons and rally to his defense — hence the polling released last week in which super-majorities of GOP-leaning voters said they approved of his performance with Putin, and share his views on trade wars and tariffs.  If it had been Obama at the center of either controversy, Republicans would undoubtedly have been nearly unified in intense opposition, but tribal loyalty is paramount these days.  Indeed, for a great many partisan voters, Trump himself is the top “issue” ahead of the midterms, according to a new Politico/Morning Consult poll:


If the election turns into a referendum on the president, that could be a boon to Democrats…if Trump’s job approval rating is in ugly shape, and if undecided voters break substantially against him.  A new NBC/WSJ poll contains hopeful signs for both parties.  Let’s start with the good news for Republicans: The president’s approval numbers have surged in the series, placing him back in the mid-40’s:

President Donald Trump’s approval rating edged higher during a week in which he faced withering criticism following a summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin, signaling that he is positioned to weather the latest controversy sparked by his unusual brand of politics. Mr. Trump’s job approval rating rose to 45% in a new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll, the highest mark of his presidency and up 1 percentage point from June. The survey was taken over a four-day period that started July 15, a day before Mr. Trump’s news conference with Mr. Putin in which he questioned the conclusion of U.S. intelligence agencies that Russia meddled in the 2016 election…Mr. Trump’s overall approval rating continued to rank among the lowest of any modern president at this point his first term, and the poll turned up warning signals for him.

For what it’s worth, Rasmussen’s new data is almost identical.  As the Journal’s write-up notes, (45/52) is historically pretty weak for this juncture of a presidency, but it’s still competitive — and significantly stronger than Trump’s image among actual voters on election day 2016.  What explains that uptick, especially in light of the Russia debacle (of which a heavy majority of voters disapproves in the survey)?  Two factors: First, a nearly unprecedented ‘rally around the flag’ effect among GOP-leaners, fully 88 percent of whom approve of Trump. “The more Trump gets criticized by the media, the more his base seems to rally behind him,” one of the pollsters is quoted as saying. Second, strong marks on the economy:


The foreign policy decisions will become more decided as we move towards the next presidential election. But for now, it looks as though the voters are giving President Trump the benefit, a lot of that coming from the strong economy.


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