This morning, 43.3 percent of “likely or registered voters” “approve” Trump, while 52.9 percent “disapprove.” The difference—9.6 percent—is greater than the amount by which the Democrats won the House vote in 2018. (As usual, the percentages of “approvers” and “disapprovers” don’t add to 100; unsurprisingly, at least 3.7 percent of the adult population is just out to lunch.)
Meanwhile, Trump is polling at 41 or 42 percent against the best known Democrats.
In the United States, in view of the quirks of the Electoral College, you can win the presidency with less than 50 percent of the vote, depending on how your votes are distributed. But you need at least about 45 percent to come within spitting distance of winning.
Vox summarizes: The many 2020 polls are telling a pretty clear story.
Trump is still really unpopular. He’s generally quite unpopular in the most important electoral battleground states too. Here are the raw numbers for Trump in the states that are expected to be competitive in the 2020 election, according to the latest Morning Consult data:
New Hampshire: 39 percent approval, 58 percent disapproval
Wisconsin: 42 percent approval, 55 percent disapproval
Michigan: 42 percent approval, 54 percent disapproval
Iowa: 42 percent approval, 54 percent disapproval
Arizona: 45 percent approval, 51 percent disapproval
Pennsylvania 45 percent approval, 52 percent disapproval
Ohio: 46 percent approval, 50 percent disapproval
North Carolina: 46 percent approval, 50 percent disapproval
Florida: 48 percent approval, 48 percent disapproval
Indiana: 49 percent approval, 46 percent disapproval
It’s a grim picture. Wisconsin and Michigan were critical Midwestern pieces of Trump’s Electoral College puzzle, and he is now deeply unpopular in both states. Pennsylvania was maybe his most surprising win in 2016, and now he is 7 points underwater there. Perhaps Trump can take solace in his even job approval rating in Florida, but that is the only swing state where the president looks as strong as he did on Election Day 2016. Everywhere else, his support has deteriorated.
Glug, Glug, Glug
Much has been made of madness will ensue, and what mischief Trump will make, when he fully grasps that he is headed down the drain. And rightly so.
But an equally important question is how Republican elites will react. What post-Trump future will they envision? For those up for reelection, to what lengths will they go to placate the remaining Trump base? For those not up for reelection in 2020, will they continue to act like resident rodents on Trump’s sinking ship?
For the five Federalist Society justices on the Supreme Court, how much political capital will they want to spend to protect Trump’s sorry ass from the legal liability he so richly deserves?
Call me Pollyanna, but I think that—assuming crass, amoral reasoning on the part of the five Federalist justices—the answer will be, not bloody much.
I now have a reader in Iran, as of this morning. Let’s just try to stay out of war, OK?