Tracking the Donald Trump approval rating is officially underway now that the 45th president has taken office. Before his first day on the job, numerous media outlets reported he had the lowest favorability rating of any newly-elected president at 40 percent.
So how did week one go?
According to Gallup, quite well. The Trump approval rating closed on Friday, Jan. 27, with a five-point climb to 45 percent and had reached a high of 46 percent on Thursday.
That’s a more volatile swing upward than Presidents Obama, George W. Bush, and Clinton experienced over the same time period, though all three admittedly started with much higher ratings.
— The Hill (@thehill) January 26, 2017
Quinnipiac’s Trump approval rating (tweeted above) was much lower than the Gallup, reporting 36 percent full approval and 44 percent disapproval. The outlier here is the 19 percent undecided. What does that mean?
To answer, it is essential to review what exactly President Trump did in week one. He signed a number of executive orders that set in motion many of his campaign promises.
He has ordered the defunding of federal funds to sanctuary cities that refuse to comply in reporting data regarding undocumented immigrants; he has defanged ObamaCare; he has moved the U.S.-Mexico border wall forward and floated some ideas for how Mexico will pay for it; he has called out the media multiple times; ordered a review into voter fraud claims; and called for “extreme vetting” and a prohibition of the country’s refugee program.
Also, he has stated his U.S. Supreme Court Justice pick is coming next week and hinted the choice would be a Constitutionalist in the mold of the late Antonin Scalia.
Given the sweeping scope of his week one actions, undecideds are likely still undecided not because they disagree with those actions, but because they are simply unsure of how the president’s orders are going to translate into action.
This group, in other words, is more likely to skew towards a positive Trump approval rating.
PREVIOUS TRUMP APPROVAL RATING COVERAGE FROM THE INQUISITR:
The president is certainly not out of the woods, however. Many of his orders will face stiff legal and political opposition, not only from Democrats but from some within his own party.
For example, the president said that he believes torture works and received a strong rebuke from Arizona Senator and former Republican Presidential candidate John McCain.
So long as the Trump approval rating remains in the 40s, Democrats and Republicans opposed to his agenda can feel somewhat emboldened to push back on anything that might run opposed to the wants of their constituents.
Something else that may distinguish the Trump approval rating from those of other presidents is the fact he had a record low favorability even as he was elected.
This could indicate that Americans may be less concerned with how they feel about their new president and more concerned with what he gets accomplished.
Evidence for this is in the high approval rating President Obama had upon leaving office. While the final Gallup number was around 57 percent, his party was decimated under his leadership, losing more than 1,000 seats at both federal and state levels.
Furthermore, candidate Hillary Clinton ran on Obama’s policies and he actively campaigned for her, yet she still lost.
But what do you think, readers?
Should the Trump approval rating be a sign of encouragement for the large week one upswing, or is it too early and did it start too low to make much of a difference? Sound off in the comments section below.