Trump, Battered In New Poll, Says ‘Love Me Or Hate Me’ You Have to Vote For Me

August 16, 2019 by Dan McCue
U.S. President Donald Trump answers questions from reporters before departing the White House May 14, 2019 in Washington, DC. Photo by Olivier Douliery/ Abaca Press

WASHINGTON – With polls suggesting his disapproval rating is near an all-time high, President Donald Trump told attendees at a boisterous New Hampshire campaign rally Thursday night they had to vote for him “whether you love me or hate me.”

A Fox News survey on Wednesday showed the president’s disapproval rating has jumped to 56 percent, just one point shy of the record high in the network’s polling.

The poll indicated Trump’s disapproval numbers climbed 5 percentage points from last month, likely reflecting the general public’s reaction to mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio that killed 31 people and wounded dozens more.

The only time the president’s disapproval rating was higher in the Fox News poll was in October 2017, when it reached 57 percent.

That month was also marked by a mass shooting — one in which a gunman sprayed gunfire on a crowd of 22,000 concertgoers from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas.

The incident, still the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history, left 58 people dead and 700 injured.

The Fox News poll also found that just 43 percent of respondents approve of Trump’s job performance, down from 46 percent in July.

The record low for Trump approval in Fox News’s polling is 38 percent, also from October of 2017.

The latest survey found Trump now has a record disapproval rating among men, at 53 percent, among white men, at 46 percent, and among independents, 64 percent.

The president also got low marks for his response to the mass shootings, with just 37 percent approving of how he’s handled them, and 46 percent saying they believe his administration has made the country less safe from mass shootings.

Fifty-nine percent of voters in the poll say they are unhappy with the way things are going in the country.

The same proportion say the president is “tearing the country apart,” compared to only 31 percent who say he is “drawing the country together.”

Two years ago, those numbers stood at 56 percent and 33 percent, respectively.

The results have a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points, Fox News said.

As raw as the finding must have rubbed the president, their release coincided with potentially even worse news for the White House — multiple analysts and a mathematical formula tied to the Treasury bond suggesting the U.S. economy could be sliding into a recession.

Speaking to supporters at the Southern New Hampshire University Arena Thursday night, Trump sought both to reassure the rallygoers and to convince them their financial security depends on his reelection.

“The United States right now has the hottest economy anywhere in the world,” Trump said a day after the Dow Jones Industrial Average had its worst day of the year, dropping 3%.

Later he warned that if he isn’t reelected in 2020, the value of attendees’ 401(k) retirement accounts will “go down the tubes.”

Trump also defended his tactic of using tariffs in an ongoing trade dispute with China.

The White House imposed 25% tariffs on $250 billion of imports from China and has threatened to hit the remaining $300 billion worth of Chinese imports with 10% tariffs.

Earlier this week, the president delayed that increase on about half of those items to avoid raising prices for U.S. holiday shoppers.

Trump told his New Hampshire audience that China wants to make a trade deal with the U.S. because the dispute is costing the country millions of jobs.

But, as always, the president claimed to be in the driver’s seat.

“I don’t think we’re ready to make a deal,” Trump said.

On gun violence, the Kryptonite to his poll numbers, Trump said the government can’t make it more difficult for law-abiding citizens to protect themselves.

Instead he said, he would like to see a growth in the number of facilities that could house the mentally ill.

“We will be taking mentally deranged and dangerous people off of the streets so we won’t have to worry so much about them,” Trump said without explaining how he’ll convince Congress to pay for such an initiative.

“We don’t have those institutions anymore, and people can’t get proper care. There are seriously ill people and they’re on the streets,” he said.

Trump lost in New Hampshire by about 2,700 votes in 2016, but his showing in a crowded field of GOP hopefuls lent his campaign credibility. Though it has only four Electoral College votes, the president reportedly now sees the state as one of the keys to his reelection — especially if the race is close on election night.

A new poll by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center suggests winning the Granite State won’t be easy for the incumbent president.

It found that 42% of New Hampshire adults approve of Trump’s performance in office, while 53% disapprove. The poll also showed that 49% approve of Trump’s handling of the economy and 44% disapprove.

Overall Trump’s net approval among New Hampshire residents is virtually unchanged since August 2018.

“Support for Trump has remained remarkably consistent over the past year,” said Andrew Smith, director of the UNH Survey Center. “Trump supporters and detractors have made up their minds about Trump.”

The Survey Center conducted its survey of 501 randomly selected adults between July 29 and August 8. The margin of error for the survey is +/- 4.4 percent.

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