Weekly political update – Where news & perceptions meet reality

Weekly political update – Where news & perceptions meet reality

Bottom Line: This is your weekly reality check. What's really going on with public opinion of the president and our view of the direction of the country? Here it is...

  • Trump's lowest rating: 37% approval (8/4/17)            
  • Trump highest approval rating: 47% approval (12/6/19)                   
  • Trump's current rating: 44% approval

The articles of impeachment are finally signed, sealed and delivered to the Senate with a trial set to begin next week. So is the phase 1 China trade deal. It’s ironic dichotomy that the two played out on the same day. It’s the epitome of the Trump presidency in a nutshell. Democrats attempting to take out President Trump by any means possible and President Trump persevering to achieve, especially economic, success. The kind of success Democrats and their allies in news media said wouldn’t be possible. Speaking of which, China trade isn’t even the only major trade pact this week! The USMCA to replace NAFTA is also taking place. 

As we ready for the Senate impeachment trial Americans are largely unmoved. In fact, President Trump’s approval rating is flat compared to a month ago and last week. But look beneath the hood of the averages and we see President Trump’s back on the rise among likely voters – consistently his strength, and most instructive in the context of the 2020 election cycle. Something that’s fascinating is just how fast the news cycle really does more on from one narrative to the next. A week ago, the discussion among Democrats was centered on condemning President Trump for taking out the world’s leading terrorist. 

President Trump’s average approval rating trails President Obama’s by two points on this same date. Among likely voters however, President Trump has a five-point higher approval rating than Obama at this stage in the cycle. Yes, five points! As usual, the more informed and engaged people are, the more likely they are to approve of President Trump. 

  • Adult only samples: 43%
  • Registered voters: 43%                                              
  • Likely voters: 51%         

What you never hear reported are the ratings of the Democratic leaders opposing him. Here’s the latest...  

  • Pelosi: 38% 
  • Schumer: 29%

It’s telling that both remain far less approved of than the impeached president. Not only that but each lost support over the past week. This as the impeachment articles advance. There’s a story playing out in these ratings.

Looking at the direction of the country this week...                              

Where we stood on Inauguration Day:      

  • Right Direction: 30%                                                                                                           


  • Right Direction: 38%                                             

Overall, we’re 8% more optimistic than in the aggregate of the Obama years.

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