I don’t know whether Donald Trump and his campaign team were smart or lucky or both. He won the presidency with neither a majority nor even a plurality of the popular vote, because he got just enough votes in just the right places to turn 46.1 percent of the popular vote into 56.9 percent of the electoral vote.
Every day since he won, he has set a record, in the history of polling, for having the lowest approval rating at that point in a president’s first term. Here’s a summary of a recent Washington Post/ ABC News poll taken earlier this week, including the historical comparisons that show just how horrible these numbers are:
The president’s approval rating stands at 42 percent, the lowest recorded at this stage of a presidency dating to Dwight Eisenhower. Trump’s 53 percent disapproval rating is 14 percentage points higher than Bill Clinton’s 39 percent disapproval in April 1993, the worst before Trump. Eight years ago, then-president Barack Obama’s approval was 69 percent, his disapproval 26 percent.
The Post-ABC poll finds 43 percent of Americans said they strongly disapprove of Trump’s performance. That’s also the worst by far of any president since George H.W. Bush by more than double. In the spring of 1993, 21 percent said they strongly disapproved of Clinton’s performance.
And yet there is one more paragraph in the Post’s story on the poll that must be noted:
There are no signs of major slippage in support among those who voted for Trump. His approval rating among those who cast ballots for him stands at 94 percent. Among Republicans, it is 84 percent. Asked of those who voted for him whether they regret doing so, 2 percent say they do, while 96 percent say supporting Trump was the right thing to do. When asked if they would vote for him again, 96 percent say they would, which is higher than the 85 percent of Hillary Clinton voters who say they would support her again.
In short: As the 100th day of his presidency approaches, the voters who put Donald into the Oval Office are sticking with him. Only 2 percent wish they could take back their vote for him. Substantially more of those who voted for Hillary Clinton regret voting for her than do Trump voters regret voting for him.