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Trump’s approval rating drops as coronavirus pandemic, economic crisis continue

WASHINGTON — With Americans going on a month of hunkering down in response to the coronavirus and growing economic concerns, President Donald Trump’s approval rating has dropped six points since last month, according to a Gallup poll released Thursday. 

Trump’s new 43% approval rating marks the steepest decline between two Gallup polls since the start of his presidency. It’s down from last month’s 49% approval rating — a rating he also held in early 2020 — when the White House began implementing coronavirus distancing measures. His disapproval rating from the April 1-14 poll was 54%, up from 45% in March.

Ninety-three percent of Republicans, 39% of independents and 7% of Democrats said they approved of the job the president is doing in the recent poll. The drop in approval was seen among Democrats and independents, while approval among stayed roughly the same. Gallup last surveyed Americans on Trump’s job approval March 13-22.

Americans surveyed are also less satisfied with the direction of the country than they were last month. Thirty percent said they are satisfied with the way things are going, a 12-point drop from the last time Gallup asked in early March. Sixty-eight percent are dissatisfied, up from 57% in a March 2-13 Gallup poll.

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The April poll surveyed 1,017 American adults and has a margin of error of +/- 4 percentage points.

The results come as the president is preparing to gradually ease up on distancing guidelines implemented one month ago that are aimed at preventing the spread of the virus but have led to staggering unemployment numbers. 

In the last month, the president has sparred with governors, reporters and Democratic leaders over the coronavirus response. The death toll in the U.S. stands at more than 30,000 with more than 650,000 cases of the coronavirus.

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Early in March, Trump touted Gallup polling data from a Feb. 3-16 survey that showed Americans were largely confident in the government’s preparedness to handle the coronavirus outbreak, with 77% saying they were very or somewhat confident. An Associated Press fact check found he misrepresented those findings in tweets claiming they were representative of public approval even though the poll was conducted weeks earlier.

He saw a majority approval for his handling of the virus response in a previous Gallup poll taken just as he declared a national emergency. A mid-March poll by Gallup, when the organization most recently released information about this question, found 60% of Americans approved of Trump’s handling of the crisis. The support of his coronavirus response included 94% of Republicans, 60% of independents and 27% of Democrats. 

Congress saw an eight-point increase in support since last month, which comes after a show of bipartisanship in passing a sweeping coronavirus stimulus package. Thirty percent said they approve of the job Congress is doing, a number not seen in over a decade of Gallup polling.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Gallup poll: Trump approval slips as coronavirus, economic crisis continue

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