A new poll taken by the Gallup organisation released on Thursday after a month of coronavirus lockdowns across the United States suggests that Americans’ satisfaction with the state of the union has, predictably, dropped precipitously in recent weeks.
The poll suggests that less than a third of Americans, or 30 percent, are happy with the way things are going in the country, a 12-point drop since the last poll was taken in early March. Gallup said a monthly drop of that magnitude has been recorded only twice in the past 20 years – in October 2008 during the Great Recession and in July 2016 following a string of mass shootings across the country.
Overall satisfaction among Republicans has dropped 17 points, to 60 percent, 14 points among independents, to 24 percent, and remains unchanged at 10 percent among Democrats.
The poll, of 1,017 adults taken between April 1 and 14, also showed the sharpest drop in approval for President Donald Trump since he took office in early 2017. Trump’s approval rating has dropped six points, to 43 percent, since mid-March, when it stood at 49 percent, a personal best of his.
Our partisan parallel universes are drifting even further apart. Trump job approval in new Gallup poll: Republicans 93%, Democrats 7%. Independents are at 39%.
— Larry Sabato (@LarrySabato) April 16, 2020
“The six-point decline in the president’s approval rating is the sharpest drop Gallup has recorded for the Trump presidency so far, largely because Trump’s ratings have been highly stable and have yet to reach the historical average for presidents (back to 1945) of 53 percent,” Gallup said.
Gallup notes that the 43 percent rating is still high for Trump, and that 2020 has so far been a relatively good one for the president, with approval ratings averaging 46 percent in three separate polls. His average rating since taking office is 40 percent.
Trump’s approval ratings among Republicans remains relatively stable, with 93 percent of GOP respondents expressing satisfaction with the president. His ratings among Democrats has fallen six points to 7 percent, and four points among independents, to 39 percent.
Gallup used to be the early-warning system for presidential polling, but now it lags behind other surveys because of its decreased frequency. https://t.co/UvQHbtRnGv
— Steven Shepard (@POLITICO_Steve) April 16, 2020
The one bright spot in the poll was its suggestion that Americans think higher of the US Congress that at any point in the last decade.
Approval ratings for the legislative branch jumped eight points since the poll in early March, to 30 percent. The last time Congress saw approval ratings above 30 percent was in October of 2009, eight months into former President Barack Obama’s first term and the president controlled both chambers on Capitol Hill.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has strained the US and its institutions in unprecedented ways, creating great challenges for leaders,” Gallup concluded in its report about the poll. “It’s unsurprising that fewer Americans are satisfied with the way things are going than was the case a month ago.”