As of Friday night, Donald Trump’s average approval rating, as calculated by FiveThirtyEight, stands at 37.3 percent–far and away the lowest on record for any newly-elected president after 323 days in office. If that sounds like a broken record, that’s because this year has seen Trump’s approval ratings sink to levels not seen since opinion polling began in the 1940s.
But Trump should be lucky his numbers are even that high. One of the few constants for Trump is his robust support among white evangelicals. But a new poll from Pew Research suggests even that support may be slipping.
Pew’s numbers, rolled out on Thursday, show that 61 percent of white evangelicals approve of Trump’s performance. That looks disheartening on paper. After all, it’s double the grade the rest of the nation gave Trump; only 32 percent of all respondents approved of Trump’s performance. But then you have to consider that in February, the same pollster found a whopping 78 percent of white evangelicals approved of Trump’s performance–nearly echoing the 81 percent who voted for him last November.
It’s possible that even those numbers may be inflated. After all, the religious right has spent the better part of this year bullying people into supporting Trump–including born-agains who have even the mildest regret about voting for the Donald. They’ve tried to convince their followers that the opposition to Trump is demonically driven. If this is any indication, that tactic isn’t working so well.
Republican strategist Mike Murphy minced no words when he discussed these findings with MSNBC’s Brian Williams. Watch here.
Murphy called the dropoff in evangelical support for Trump “a bone fracture.” That’s an apt description. After all, without support from the fundie diehards, Trump’s approval ratings would be approaching the lows of George W. Bush’s last year in office, when he was lucky to get above 25 percent.
But that’s not the only demographic where Trump’s support has tailed off, and markedly.
— Pew Research Center (@pewresearch) December 8, 2017
Trump has lost significant support among seniors, whites, and Republicans and Republican-leaning independents. Even with that dropoff, some 76 percent of Republicans approve of his performance. It’s not enough to save him from the lowest approval rating for a president at this early stage of his presidency since Reagan.
Murphy noticed that on Pearl Harbor Day, Trump tried to make it all about him–a sign that he probably sees these bad numbers. A truer sign that he not only saw them, but knows they’re real, though, is something we haven’t heard. You would think that this poll would bring out a blizzard of tweets claiming that Pew was fake news. But we haven’t seen any. Perhaps he is finally figuring out that he is uniting the country–against him.
(featured image courtesy Michael Vadon, available under a Creative Commons BY-SA license)