Donald Trump, the very stable genius, claims that he doesn’t get enough credit for being “everyone’s favorite president,” a title he likes to give himself regularly on Twitter. Like nearly everything he takes credit for, this is not only inaccurate, but it’s almost the exact opposite of the truth – and now there’s proof. While Trump’s approval ratings have remained steady, at the same embarrassingly low level since the end of 2017, his likability ratings are much worse – about on par with his approval ratings in Europe, according to a Sunday poll from NBC News and the Wall Street Journal.
You could say Donald Trump has set a new record – though one he would hardly be proud of. The NBC poll shows Trump to be the most despised president in recent history – with 69 percent of Americans personally disliking him. When you look at overall approval for his policies – the number gets even worse – with 75% of people disapproving. Only four percent of Americans, according to the survey, both liked Trump personally while approving of his policies. 19% dislike Trump but approve of his policies.
To put these numbers in further perspective, Donald Trump is the first president to be disliked by a majority of people. Following 40 years of American presidents, the lowest likability rating before Trump went to George W. Bush in March 2006 with 42% disapproval, attributed to his disastrous handling of Hurricane Katrina. The majority of presidents who served from Ronald Reagan to the present were largely well-liked, even when their policies were not.
The respondents were not asked to explain why they didn’t like him, suggesting that they weren’t led to dislike him for any particular reason, though a few stated his embracement of white supremacists or the border concentration camps. The bottom line is, Trump is regularly looking weaker as an incumbent, and his popularity isn’t likely to increase anytime soon.
James Sullivan is the assistant editor of Brain World Magazine and an advocate of science-based policy making