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An update on Trump’s approval numbers

As regular readers know, I’m obsessed with Donald Trump’s approval ratings, which are very bad, but extremely stable. The last time I updated you, I was horrified to note that his approval number had edged up, a tiny bit each day, during the first two weeks since our national discourse was taken over by impeachment talk — that Donald Trump had used his enormous leverage (your tax dollars and mine) over Ukrainian President Zelensky to try to get Zelensky to dig up dirt on Hunter Biden and, hopefully, his father Joe as well.

Since I wrote that, Trump’s approval number has edged down every day. On Sunday, it back to where it was a few weeks ago, 12 points under water, with 41.6 percent expressing approval and 53.7 percent expressing disapproval of the job Trump is doing as president, according to the average of many approval polls regularly updated by the gurus at FiveThirtyEight. That’s still not the lowest Trump has been since taking office, and in fact it’s right where Trump was when this mess took over the world.

But at least it stopped going up.

Comments (9)

  1. Submitted by Ray Schoch on 10/07/2019 - 11:17 am.

    Even small favors are welcome in this context. A “quid pro quo,” while hardly irrelevant, is actually not the main point since “this mess” took over the news cycle(s). According to the chair of the Federal Election Commission: “It is illegal for any person to solicit, accept, or receive anything of value from a foreign national in connection with a U.S. election (52 U.S.C. § 39121(a)(2). This is not a novel concept. Electoral intervention from foreign governments has been considered unacceptable since the beginnings of our nation. Our Founding Fathers sounded the alarm about ‘foreign interference, Intrigue, and Influence.’ They knew that when foreign governments seek to influence American politics, it is always to advance their own interests, not America’s. Anyone who solicits or accepts foreign assistance risks being on the wrong end of a federal investigation. Any political campaign that receives an offer of a prohibited donation from a foreign source should report that offer to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.”

    I think it safe to say that at least a couple of “prohibited donations” to Mr. Trump’s campaign(s) were either not reported to the FBI, or were buried by that agency at the request of the White House, and likely the President himself. The latest one was well-documented by a variety of news sources, using video and audio means, near one of the entrances to the White House. Supporters who insist that “the President has done nothing wrong” in this context are living in an ideological cave on an otherwise flat earth populated exclusively by people who look just like me, and have a connection with reality that is tenuous, at best. This includes the current President, regardless of his approval ratings.

    • Submitted by Paul Brandon on 10/07/2019 - 04:58 pm.

      The Trumpistas have raised the art of declaring their innocence of crimes they are not accused of to new levels.

    • Submitted by Bart Smith on 10/07/2019 - 06:26 pm.

      The Steele Dossier prepared for use as dirt against Trump was from a “foreign national” who used foreigners as his sources. Was that not illegal, and if so, why was no one prosecuted for it?

      • Submitted by Paul Brandon on 10/08/2019 - 10:12 am.

        No, it was not illegal.
        The dossier was prepared by a private corporation (Fusion) employing a private individual (Steele) who used in turn a variety of sources of varying accuracy.
        It was of varying value — some of its allegations were taken seriously by the intelligence community; others were merely speculation.
        No legal action was based on it.
        All covered by the 1st Amendment to the extent that US citizens were involved.

        • Submitted by Bart Smith on 10/09/2019 - 07:29 pm.

          So you are saying that the law only applies to US citizens acting outside of a corporation, but if they use a corporate structure through which they get a foreigner to influence an election they haven’t done anything wrong per that law? So both parties should form sham corporations and they can buy all the foreign election influence and aid they want.

  2. Submitted by Bart Smith on 10/07/2019 - 06:35 pm.

    The actual Trump quote :”The other thing, There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great. Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it… It sounds horrible to me. “

    I think it is underhanded to state his request as “asking to dig up dirt”.He was asking for an investigation of a specific situation. Was the Meuller team looking to “dig up dirt”?

    • Submitted by Paul Brandon on 10/08/2019 - 10:06 am.

      Biden did NOT interfere with a specific prosecution.
      He pressed for the release of a prosecutor that most of our allies (remember when we had some?) agreed was incompetent.

      • Submitted by Bart Smith on 10/09/2019 - 07:24 pm.

        The issue here isn’t whether or not Biden is guilty, it is whether or not Trump asked them to investigate the matter or if he asked them to “dig up dirt”.

  3. Submitted by Mark Gruben on 10/10/2019 - 05:05 pm.

    I’ve been tracking Trump’s approval vs disapproval numbers for quite some time, and it’s apparent to me that, while both are relatively steady, his approval numbers are more prone to fluctuation. This, in turn, suggests that a small number of people are prone to wavering – approving one day, disapproving the next – based on things he says or does. When this group is added to those who seem to approve no matter what he does, he’s been unable to climb higher than 46% of respondents. On the other hand, the variations in his disapproval numbers are statistically insignificant; those who disapprove of Trump seem rock-solid in their opposition. He’s been unable to bring that number down below 53%. Keep in mind, too, that these are measures of job approval, not popularity; popularity is much more prone to fluctuations, because it has to do with personality, not performance. Bottom line? People are unlikely to vote for someone they dislike. But they are even less likely to vote for someone they don’t approve of. Put another way, one can learn to LIKE someone. It’s very difficult to learn to APPROVE of someone.

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