President Donald Trump marked his first 100 days in office Saturday.
Trump approached the milestone with the lowest approval rating at this point of any other president in polls since 1945. But 96 percent of those who supported him in November say they’d do so again today, according to a new ABC News/Washington Post poll.
Trump’s low approval rating speaks to his poor performance as president. The fact that 96 percent of those who voted for him would do so again speaks to the poor performance of the Democrats as the opposition party.
Trump’s approval rating also shows other divisions.
Fifty-four percent of Whites approve of his job performance; just 19 percent of nonwhites (including 22 percent of Hispanics and 6 percent of Blacks) agree. Trump’s approval rating is 15 points lower among the youngest adults compared with seniors. His rating is 67 percent among conservatives, versus 37 percent among moderates and 9 percent among liberals.
The majorities of those polled say Trump lacks the judgment and the temperament it takes to serve effectively. Six in 10 doubt his honesty and trustworthiness, see him as out of touch and don’t think he understands the problems of people like them. Fifty-six percent say he hasn’t accomplished much in his first 100 days. Fifty-five percent say he doesn’t follow a consistent set of principles in setting policy.
According to the poll, 42 percent of Americans approve of Trump’s performance as president, while 53 percent disapprove. That compares with an average of 69 versus 19 percent for past presidents at or near 100 days in office. By comparison, Obama had an approval rating of 69 percent at or near 100 days in office.
Yet the polls show the Democrats have some major challenges of their own.
Sixty-seven percent say the Democratic Party is out of touch with the concerns of most Americans.
While Trump would retain almost all of his support if the election were held again today (96 percent), fewer of Clinton’s supporters say they’d stick with her (85 percent), producing a 40-43 percent Clinton-Trump result in a hypothetical redo among self-reported 2016 voters.
Most of the former Clinton supporters would not back Trump; only 2 percent of them say they’d do so, similar to the 1 percent of Trump voters who say they’d switch to Clinton. Instead, they’re more apt to say they’d vote for a third-party candidate or wouldn’t vote.
The poll also shows 73 percent approve of Trump’s pressuring companies to keep jobs in the United States. More than half, 53 percent, see him as a strong leader.
It should be troubling to Democrats the poll finds no evidence of buyer’s remorse among Trump supporters. Among those who report having voted for him in November, 96 percent today say it was the right thing to do; a mere 2 percent regret it. And if a rerun of the election were held today, the poll indicates even the possibility of a Trump victory in the popular vote among 2016 voters.
Voters may have a different view if Trump and the Republican-controlled congress push through legislation to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act also known as Obamacare, or enact major changes in federal spending that result in significant cuts to popular social programs, or if U.S. troops are sent to fight in a major foreign conflict.
In just four months in office, the Trump administration has raised the possibility of a military conflict with North Korea and Syria.
Trump and Republicans in congress have proposed legislation that would significantly reduce the number of Americans receiving health coverage, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office. A GOP House bill was pulled in March for lack of support. The revised proposal would be even worse because it would allow states to waive some crucial requirements including covering various pre-existing conditions and essential health benefits.
The 100-day point has been used as a benchmark since Franklin D. Roosevelt’s administration. It usually marks the height of a president’s honeymoon in public opinion.
But even Trump supporters could begin to turn if his promises for more jobs are not kept and his policies begin to show negative consequences.