News ID: 255450
Published: 0322 GMT July 07, 2019

Trump faces a range of reelection risks: Poll

Trump faces a range of reelection risks: Poll

A new poll by ABC News and Washington Post shows that US President Donald Trump is facing a range of reelection risks despite reaching the highest job approval rating of his career.

Fifty-three percent of Americans disapprove of Trump’s overall job performance, keeping him at majority disapproval continuously for his first two and a half years in office, a record for any president in modern polling.

Forty-four percent of Americans approve of Trump’s overall job performance, up a slight five percentage points from April and two points better than his peak early in his presidency, reported.

Fifty-one percent approve of Trump’s handling of the economy, more than half for the first time in his presidency. His approval ratings across eight other issues all are substantially lower, ranging from 42% on handling taxes to 29% on global warming.

Personally, moreover, a broad 65% say that since taking office Trump "has acted in a way that’s unpresidential," not far from the 70% who said so in mid-2017 and early 2018 alike. Just 28% in this poll, produced for ABC by Langer Research Associates, say his behavior is "fitting and proper" for a president.

That said, support for Congress initiating impeachment proceedings against Trump remains unchanged since April at 37%, while opposition to this step has grown by 13 points since August to 59%, a new high. Sixty-one percent of Democrats favor impeachment action, but just 37% of independents – and 7% of Republicans – agree.

Bolstered by a strong economy, Trump reached the highest job approval rating of his job in the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll and runs competitively for reelection against four of five possible Democratic contenders. Yet he remains broadly unpopular across personal and professional measures, marking his vulnerabilities in the 2020 election.

Even while it’s up, Trump’s historically low approval rating makes him vulnerable in the 2020 elections – but hardly a pushover.

Among all adults (there’s plenty of time to register to vote), Joe Biden leads Trump by 14 points. But that narrows among the other four Democrats tested against Trump in this poll – an 8-point lead for Kamala Harris, a slight 7 points for Elizabeth Warren, 6 for Bernie Sanders and 4 for Pete Buttigieg. The latter two don’t reach statistical significance.

Among registered voters, moreover, Biden still leads, by 10 points, but the other races all tighten to virtual or actual dead heats – Trump a non-significant -2 points against Harris, -1 against Sanders and exactly tied with Warren and Buttigieg.

These are early days, of course, with time aplenty for preferences to develop. It’s also worth noting that, as the 2016 contest showed, polling ahead in – and winning – the national vote is not necessarily the same as winning the Electoral College.

Among current Trump supporters (those who back him against all Democrats tested), 52% call it extremely important to them that he wins a second term. At the same time, among current Democratic supporters (those who back all Democrats tested vs. Trump), 73% call it extremely important to them that Trump does not win – a wide 21-point intensity gap for the opposition. The question is whether that translates into turnout.

In another measure, 48% of adults say there’s no chance they’d consider Trump against any Democratic candidate. It’s 46% among currently registered voters.

The economy, health care and immigration top the public’s list of most important issues in the 2020 election, each cited by about eight in ten Americans. Foreign policy, gun violence, issues of special interest to women and taxes make up the next tier, each called a top issue by about seven in ten. Abortion (highly important to 61%) and global warming (54%) follow.


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