Is Trump the least popular president ever? A simple”No” doesn’t cover it anymore. Now we can only respond; “Depends how you measure it.”
Underwater Yet Still Sinking
Trump started out below 50% on day one, back at the “Biggest Inauguration in History” where the protest marches outdrew his swearing in by a HUGE margin. In fact the one year anniversary protest marches against trump also did better so far as turnout as any Trump event of any kind yet.
The fact is Trump has only flirted with 50% briefly and distantly. Trump trashes the people who are opposed or turned off by him just like he trashed the girl who would didn’t fuck him in High School. In other words- Suddenly its something you never wanted and no one would ever want? 2 minutes ago you thought she was hot.
This would probably be easier to accept if were more spectacular. Lets face it people NOT doing something can be hard to put a compelling picture up of. So the TV news doesn’t do cover it like they might if they had some juicy video.
The only poll that really has decades of history is Gallup. It may be flawed to a
degree, but it seemed to be about accurate on election day when votes were cast. FACT-Hillary got a lot more votes but lost due to our Arcane systems fatal Republican President Making Flaw known as The Electoral College.
The fact is- Gallup AND the Real Clear Politics Poll of Polls NEVER show the president at 50% or higher in popularity.
The Lowest For The Longest
If Trump’s NOT the lowest for the longest just give it time. Until now it was Harry S Truman holding the All Time Lowest Presidential Approval ratings.
Here’s some overview how that happened;
The beginning of Truman’s presidency is one of the worst days in presidential history as Franklin Delano Roosevelt has to die to cause it. Deep into a world war Americans were unfamiliar with their not so eloquent president. He made either President Bush seem very charismatic.
In Truman’s case dropping the atomic bombs on Japan starts him out looking like a brutal killer or a total wimp. Irony of ironies. Half America resents the dropping of the bombs, the other half think he should have dropped more. So his first decision just divides everyone.
For Truman dropping the Bomb and following FDR are just too much to absorb for most.
Politics and use of military force in Korea further divided the public on Truman. The Korean War was a problem simply because we couldn’t will it to an end in a few weeks. Its also a questionable war. Truman feuded with the Theater Commander MacArthur and MacArthur took it public. Plus we’re starting to come to terms with the Segregation issue at home.
Harry Truman never caught a break publicity wise.
If you dislike Trump the Bad News is despite this Truman keeps getting elected. The Good News? Trump will almost definitely NOT be able to replicate the level of personal engagement Truman gutted out in the extensive Whistle Stop Tour to get re-elected. It showed poise, control and determination. Truman just had more character than Trump.
Look at the gargantuan effort Truman put in-
Truman gets by mostly on shoe leather, one of his re-election tours featured him doing whats been called whistle-stop tour. Basically he took a train to as many small towns as possible and formed a bond with enough average people to get around the bad polls and win. I don’t know if a Tweet or a series of tweets has the same effect.
The Numbers Now
Trump is sickening everyone by already campaigning for 2020 but he probably has to. The real question is how much of that is based on his craziness and need for approval? Like Hitler he seems to need to really kill it at a good rally to buoy his spirits
14 months in Trump is about 5% below what he had on Inauguration Day. 14 months below 50% has happened but below 46%? And constantly ‘bottoming out’ with dips into 30s?
It’s not as bad as ‘The Last Days of Bush” yet, but soon he will absolutely be the president who had the lowest approval for the longest time.
The Very Worst?
Again, Truman or George W Bush own the all time low approval, with low 20’s as the nation waited out the end of their careers. Viewed as term-limited lame ducks who pointlessly started wars of choice they were loathed at the end. That’s the big difference. They had been president for awhile and just wore out their welcome.
Trump’s White House Home Invasion is only 2 months into year 2.
How Could it Get Worse?
A war would probably be enough to drop Trump to very lowest ever, say in the mid teens approval wise sespite the apparent ‘staying power’ in the 30% range.
Frustrating many is the Trump Dysfunctional Ad Hoc approach to all governing. The lack of civility, the constant shit-talking and just plain sounding crazy all hurt Trump every day.
If the level of prosperity drops off or there’s trouble for any prolonged time with the Stock Market Trump’s number will tumble.
An irresponsibly done tax cut that was widely criticized only bought Trump a few weeks in the mid forties in approval.
The Mueller Probe could send Trump’s approval plummeting but not like screwing the pooch with a war or if he gets his Wall built.
The 30% core followers are members of Cult 45 and will not change their minds no matter how much proof Mueller comes up with. This may not be enough to save Trump from Impeachment and Jail, only another hacked election seems capable of stopping that.
Is This Historic Yet?
Yes. It’s too low for too long.
Trump definitely could rescue Harry Truman from “Least Popular President Ever”.
The slightest shifts in the situation in America or on the Korean Peninsula (or any number of other places) could devastate his approval ratings in mere hours.
By devastate we mean dip to say the mid to high twenties. And something like 70% disapproval. And it could go on for two or three years.
It’s not clear how he can govern at all with the increasing strain of NEVER having so much of America approve of him.
W Says Thanks
Already no longer the dumbest president ever, George W Bush must be relieved.
Trump’s approval rating is routinely in striking distance of the W Bush All Time Low of 31.9%. He Will Beat it sooner or later. Ditto for Trump’s proximity to Bush’s all time high DISAPPROVAL of 64.8% that same week in September 2008.
The big difference is George W Bush’s big fall comes as a lame duck playing out the string. Trump is only 14 months in.
When He’s Up it Temporary, when He’s Down it Stays
Probably the constant idiocy and fascist-like talk and tweets prevent trump from rising to 50% approval.
The problem is that the failure is now baked in. Trump looks foolish regularly. His ‘outreach’ to the other side politically is always a line in the sand. He can’t work towards a consensus. He has that 30% and if he does everything right and keeps quiet for a few days he sometimes rises close to 40 but that’s a hard ceiling.
With a lot more people disinterested in politics than in the past the disengagement of about 10% of everyone helps Trump a bit too.
Low to mid 30’s are probably going to be a fact of life for this president, for however long he lasts.
And just for score keeping – the most popular ever president is George H W Bush right after the Gulf War starts. Off the top of my head i think he makes it over 80% approval. He failed to be re-elected. So that makes his the hugest drop-off ever.
Trump can never expect to hit 50%.