June 13, 2017

President Trump's disapproval rating hit 60 percent in Gallup's daily tracking poll out Tuesday. That marks an all-time high for Trump's presidency, beating out his previous high of 59 percent.

Just 36 percent of Americans approve of the job Trump is doing as president. Trump narrowly missed also setting a record for that rating; his all-time low is 35 percent approval, from March 28.

The Hill reported that neither former Presidents Barack Obama nor Bill Clinton ever hit 60 percent disapproval in Gallup's survey, and former President George W. Bush didn't cross that threshold until he'd been president for nearly five years.

The poll surveyed roughly 1,500 adults by telephone, and its margin of error is plus or minus 3 percentage points. Becca Stanek

June 7, 2017
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President Trump's approval rating dipped to a dismal 34 percent in the latest Quinnipiac University poll released Wednesday. A whopping 57 percent of Americans now disapprove of the job Trump is doing as president, marking a "new low" for Trump in the poll. Quinnipiac's findings are about on par with FiveThirtyEight's average of Trump's disapproval rating, 55.9 percent, and 38.3 percent approval number.

Trump's atrocious approval rating is just the beginning of the bad news for the president. Quinnipiac also found that 68 percent of Americans do not believe Trump is level-headed, and one-third of Trump's own party questions just how level-headed he is. Only 32 percent of voters believe Trump "did nothing wrong" with Russia, while 31 percent say he did something "illegal" and 29 percent say he did something "unethical." Sixty-eight percent of voters reported being either "very concerned" or "somewhat concerned" about Trump's relationship with Russia.

Quinnipiac University Poll assistant director Tim Malloy likened this poll to the moment in a "prize fight" where "someone in [Trump's] corner might be thinking about throwing in the towel." "There is zero good news for President Donald Trump in this survey, just a continual slide into a chasm of doubt about his policies and his very fitness to serve," Malloy said.

The Quinnipiac University Poll was conducted by phone from May 31 to June 6 among 1,361 voters nationwide. Its margin of error is plus or minus 3.2 percentage points. Becca Stanek

June 6, 2017
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President Trump had a tough time getting a lawyer to agree to represent him in the ongoing investigation into his team's potential ties to Russia's election meddling. Yahoo News reported Tuesday that "top lawyers with at least four major law firms" rejected Trump's request for representation, before Trump eventually got New York civil litigator Marc E. Kasowitz to sign on as his chief lawyer.

Lawyers' reasons for rejecting Trump varied, ranging from concerns about conflicts with existing clients, to a lack of time, to whether being associated with Trump could be detrimental to a firm's reputation and recruitment efforts. However, two reasons cropped up again and again, Yahoo News reported:

But a consistent theme, the sources said, was the concern about whether the president would accept the advice of his lawyers and refrain from public statements and tweets that have consistently undercut his position.

"The concerns were, 'The guy won't pay and he won't listen,'" said one lawyer close to the White House who is familiar with some of the discussions between the firms and the administration, as well as deliberations within the firms themselves. [Yahoo News]

The guy Trump did get to take charge of his case isn't particularly experienced in dealing with congressional and Justice Department investigations, Yahoo News reported. Kasowitz has apparently been reaching out to Washington legal veterans to get tips on how to build Trump's defense strategy.

Read more on the story at Yahoo News. Becca Stanek

June 5, 2017
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Fifty-nine percent of Americans oppose President Trump's decision to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Agreement, an ABC News/Washington Post poll released Monday revealed. Just 28 percent of Americans support Trump's move to pull out of the global climate pact, which aims to fight climate change by curbing carbon emissions.

While Trump described the agreement as a hindrance to American workers and the economy when he announced his intent to withdraw from it Thursday, 42 percent of Americans actually believe withdrawing will hurt the economy. Thirty-two percent said it would help the economy.

Trump's decision to bail on the agreement, signed by more than 190 nations, has drawn criticism from local leaders, major U.S. companies, and American allies. The Trump administration has maintained it's "a bad deal for this country."

The poll was conducted by phone from June 2 to 4 among 527 adults. Its overall margin of error is plus or minus 5 percentage points. Becca Stanek

April 25, 2017

As much as he hated to say it, conservative pundit Rush Limbaugh admitted Tuesday on his national radio show that he has an inkling President Trump is "caving" on his promise to use the spending bill to get his funding for the U.S.-Mexico border wall. "I'm very, very troubled to have to pass this on. And I want to say at the outset that I hope my interpretation is wrong, and I hope this is not the case," Limbaugh said. "But it looks like, from here — right here, right now —it looks like President Trump is caving on his demand for a measly $1 billion in the budget for his wall."

Limbaugh argued that Trump should not be intimidated by Democrats' "stupid silly threat of a government shutdown to get their way," which in this case is not funding Trump's border wall. If the government does not pass a budget by its Friday deadline, the government will shut down. However, Limbaugh warned that if Trump forgoes his plan to risk a government shutdown for his proposed border wall, then Democrats "will have just learned that this threat works on Trump too, not just all the other Republicans."

Trump said Monday that he would consider getting his funding for the wall in the fall, instead of as part of the spending bill. On Tuesday, however, Trump tweeted that he has not changed his position on getting the wall built.

Listen to the Limbaugh segment below. Becca Stanek

April 21, 2017

Before President Trump scoffed at the "ridiculous standard" of measuring a leader's success by his first 100 days in office, he signed and delivered a two-page contract outlining his "100-day action plan to Make America Great Again." But unless Trump gets really, really busy between now and April 29, when he hits 100 days as president, it's looking like he won't exactly check off every promise he made in his "contract with the American voter."

On the first page of the contract, which Trump released when he was still running for office, he pledged to pursue "six measures to clean up the corruption and special interest collusion in Washington, D.C.," "seven actions to protect American workers," and "five actions to restore security and the constitutional rule of law." Those actions included labeling China a currency manipulator (he announced earlier this month he now thinks the Chinese are "not currency manipulators") and suspending immigration for "terror-prone regions" (both of his immigration executive orders have been blocked by federal judges). He has, however, made headway on getting his Supreme Court pick confirmed, rolling back regulations, and pushing "clean coal."

His second page lists the legislative goals he planned to work on with Congress — and boasts even fewer successes. Trump had promised he'd repeal and replace ObamaCare, pass a "middle class tax relief and simplification act," enact an "affordable childcare and eldercare act," and get his proposed U.S.-Mexico border wall fully funded with "the full understanding that the country of Mexico will be reimbursing the United States for the full cost." None of that has happened.

Trump capped off his lengthy list of promises with the bolded line, "This is my pledge to you." "And if we follow these steps, we will once more have a government of, by, and for the people," the contract said.

Read the entirety of Trump's "contract with the American voter" below. Becca Stanek

March 21, 2017

President Trump's approval rating continues to tumble, but his party's health-care proposal might be even less popular than he is. FiveThirtyEight's Nate Silver reported Tuesday that, on average, only 30 percent of voters are in favor of the GOP-backed plan to repeal and replace ObamaCare. Forty-seven percent of voters are against the plan, formally titled the American Health Care Act.

Former President Barack Obama had plenty of trouble rallying support for his signature Affordable Care Act, but his net support for the bill was still better than Trump's at the same stage. While 49 percent opposed ObamaCare when it finally passed in March 2010, 40 percent favored it — a net support rating of negative 9 percent. The net support of the AHCA's average approval ratings is negative 17 percent.

Silver noted the same year Democrats passed ObamaCare, they "lost 63 seats in Congress, in part because of the health-care bill's unpopularity."

To find the the GOP bill's net support, Silver considered results from polls by Fox News, Morning Consult, Public Policy Polling, SurveyMonkey, YouGov/CBS News, and YouGov/Huffington Post. Read his full analysis over at FiveThirtyEight. Becca Stanek

March 6, 2017
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Not even a well-done steak could appease President Trump as he reportedly spent the weekend fuming over the leaks and allegations plaguing his administration.

This portrait of the president's weekend comes from The Washington Post, which spoke with 17 top White House officials, members of Congress, and friends of the president, some of whom described a commander in chief made paranoid by the information being fed to him and the conclusions he was drawing. On Wednesday, Trump was riding high off his well-received speech the night before, but that was quickly overshadowed by the Post's report that Attorney General Jeff Sessions met with the Russian ambassador during Trump's presidential campaign, despite telling Congress otherwise during his confirmation hearing. Aides said Trump was livid when Sessions agreed to recuse himself from any investigations regarding Trump and Russia, believing Sessions was giving in to the media and critics, and also angry that former campaign adviser Carter Page was giving television interviews despite the fact that he was no longer part of his team.

Meanwhile, White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon was telling Trump that "the 'deep state' is a direct threat to his presidency," the Post reports, and by the time Saturday morning rolled around, ensconced yet again at his private club in Florida, Trump surprised all of his aides by tweeting unfounded claims that former President Barack Obama tapped his phones last year. Conservative media mogul Christopher Ruddy, a longtime friend of Trump's and Mar-a-Lago member, told the Post that Trump ran into him on Saturday, and said he will be "proven right" about the allegations. "He was pissed," Ruddy said. "I haven't seen him this angry."

Trump's spirits were momentarily lifted when he saw that the Sunday newspapers were dominated by his Twitter claims, but he became mad all over again when few Republicans defended him on the morning talk shows, the Post says. Read more about Trump's woe-filled weekend — and his belief that his presidency is "being tormented in ways known and unknown" by everyone from intelligence figures to members of the media — at The Washington Post. Catherine Garcia

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