The media has bombarded us with headlines that President Trump will leave office with his lowest approval rating (the number most often cited is Pew’s 29%).  An interesting thing happens, however, when pollsters poll registered voters instead of whoever answers a phone.

Rasmussen, a polling outfit that polls likely—not just registered—voters, has Trump’s approval at 48%.

Here are just a few of the headlines that have popped up in recent days:

  • NY Times: “Trump will leave office with his lowest approval rating ever”
  • CNN: “Trump finishes with worst first term approval rating ever”
  • Axios: “Trump set to leave office with the lowest approval ratings of his presidency”
  • USA Today: “Trump leaves White House with his lowest-ever approval rating after Capitol riot, impeachment”

The goal of these headlines, I suspect, is to imply that Trump has lost more support among Republicans than he really has.

According to an NBC News poll of registered voters, Trump’s approval is significantly higher than the Pew poll of “5,360 U.S. adults,” coming in at 43%.

In their article entitled “Trump approval remains stable in new NBC poll, with Republicans unmoved after Capitol violence,” NBC News reports:

A new NBC News poll found that 43 percent of voters nationwide gave Trump a positive job approval rating, just barely down from 45 percent who said the same before the November election and the 44 percent who approved of his performance shortly after he took office in 2017.

. . . . Almost 9 in 10 Republicans — 87 percent — give Trump a thumbs-up, compared with 89 percent who said the same before the November election.

. . . . Among Republicans who say their primary loyalty is to Trump over the party, 98 percent approve of his performance. For those who say they prioritize the party over the president, his approval still stands at 81 percent — virtually unchanged from October. (The findings contrast with some other recent national polls showing Trump’s job rating lower. Unlike other surveys that sampled all U.S. adults, NBC News’ poll surveyed registered voters.)

And it’s not just among Republicans that Trump’s numbers have held firm since before the events at the Capitol on January 6th.

NBC News continues:

“While a few Republican elected officials have broken with Trump, Republican voters are sticking with him for now,” said Democratic pollster Jeff Horwitt of Hart Research, who conducted the poll with Republican pollster Bill McInturff of Public Opinion Strategies. “As we’ve seen over the course of his term, major event after major event does little to shake Trump’s standing with Republicans.”

Trump’s standing among those outside the GOP remains similarly unchanged. He gets a positive job assessment from 44 percent of independents and just 5 percent of Democrats in the latest poll, shares that are also nearly identical to those in pre-election surveys.

With GOP Rep. Peter Meijer acknowledging that his vote to impeach may have cost him his political career and Rep. Liz Cheney in a very public fight for her political life over her vote to impeach, it would seem that Trump voters’ continued support for the president is very real.

Congressional Republicans from Sens. Lindsey Graham and Rand Paul to Reps. Tom McClintock and Andy Biggs have warned GOP leadership that convicting Trump on the Democrat’s latest ludicrous impeachment endeavor would be a disaster for the Grand Old Party. They’re not wrong.


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