Despite the fact that presidential approval ratings are up, Trump is still down
President Trump’s approval rating has risen to 42 percent, according to a recent CNN poll. This has caused a bit of a buzz, considering this is the highest approval rating Trump has had since March last year at 45 percent. His ratings dropped around the 100-day mark of his presidency.
Trump’s approval ratings have been swinging back and forth for the past four months. In February, he was at a personal record low of 35 percent. So far, his job approval hovers at 39 percent. In comparison to the ratings of his predecessors, this is a historical low.
According to Gallup, the creators of the approval ratings, second to Trump’s low rating is Harry Truman, with an overall job approval rating of 45.4 percent. While it ought to be noted that this is still President Trump’s first term and these are compared to averages from other presidential terms of four or more, our current president’s first term average rating is lower than any previous president as well. Even at his current high of 42 percent in the CNN poll, Trump still trails behind the low of Carter’s first term 45.5 percent. According to an article by Philip Bump of the Washington Post, “America views Trump more negatively than any president in the era of modern polling.”
There are many factors that go into creating these polls and measuring approval ratings. Different aspects of the presidential responsibility are polled for public response. Respondents are asked whether they “approve or disapprove of the way Trump is handling (insert item)?” These items range from the economy, foreign policy and gun policy.
None of his approval ratings are above 50 percent in any of these areas. However, his highest rating is a 48 percent approval on the economy. This month’s total rating of 42 percent has become a leading headline for the White House. But why? Why has a seven point swing in approval from one month to another become such a prominent talking point?
According to polling experts, presidents with higher approval ratings generally have a better chance of getting things to go their way in office. Popular presidents historically have more Congressional support for legislation. As it currently stands, Trump needs all the legislative support he can get, even if his party holds the majority.
Despite how much Trump seems to be caught up in proving his popularity, it is a wonder he has not yet written a midnight-induced tweet about his new ratings for the month. His popularity vote is down, despite this new high. Trump seems to be uniquely unpopular. He entered the presidency with one of the lowest approval ratings of any president and this trend is likely to continue.
According to a poll by Rasmussen in Nov. 2017, however, Trump reportedly hit a different approval high. At 46 percent, this was a number the president could be proud of. He quickly took to twitter about this rating, calling all other polls “#FakeNews.”
Despite the fact that Gallup is the creator of the presidential approval rating system and the leading source in this practice, Trump refuses to acknowledge this. For Trump, it seems that he is not popular enough according to Gallup, so naturally he must instead find news he considers “real.” It is no wonder he keenly avoids any mention of this new, official rating. It is not a number he wants to see because it does not boost his ego. How many approval points does he get for denying his own approval?