People Who Don't Like President Trump Can't Imagine Why Anyone Would

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President Donald Trump talks to European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker at the G20 meeting in Germany on July 8. (Photo: Ludovic Marin/Reuters/pool photo)
President Donald Trump talks to European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker at the G20 meeting in Germany on July 8. (Photo: Ludovic Marin/Reuters/pool photo)

Nearly three-quarters of Americans who hold negative views of President Donald Trump say they can’t understand how anyone would feel differently, according to a new HuffPost/YouGov survey, while those who view him positively are more split.

Thirty-eight percent of Americans approve of Trump’s job performance, according to the poll, with 53 percent disapproving. (HuffPost Pollster’s aggregate of public polling gave him an average approval of just under 41 percent as of Tuesday afternoon.)

Among those who disapprove of Trump’s performance as president, 74 percent say they can’t understand why someone would approve of the way he is handling his job as president, while just 19 percent say they do understand the opposing perspective. That’s an even starker result than in March, when two-thirds said they couldn’t understand Trump supporters.

Among those who approve of Trump, just under half say they can understand why someone else might feel differently, and 43 percent that they don’t understand why anyone would oppose Trump.

One likely source for the disparity: Trump’s opponents are more intense in their positions than are his supporters. Forty-three percent of those polled strongly disapprove of Trump, while just 20 percent strongly approve. On both sides, those who feel strongly are more likely than those who approve or disapprove only somewhat to say they can’t understand opposing opinions.

(Photo: HuffPost)
(Photo: HuffPost)

The current political climate has led to some tensions: 31 percent of Americans say they’ve argued with a friend about politics this year, 24 percent that they’ve argued with a family member and 12 percent say that they’ve argued with a co-worker.

Use the widget below to further explore the results of the HuffPost/YouGov survey, using the menu at the top to select survey questions and the buttons at the bottom to filter the data by subgroups:


MONTHS OF TRUMP-RUSSIA STORIES HAVE CHANGED FEW MINDS. WILL THE LATEST REVELATIONS? ― HuffPollster: “A bombshell set of emails tweeted by President Donald Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr., could be the story that finally raises public concern about the administration’s connection to Russia to its boiling point. If it does, it would be the first development in the story to spur a major swing in opinion, after months of incremental revelations that only barely moved the needle. Take the results of a new HuffPost/YouGov poll conducted just last Friday and Saturday ― before the latest revelations but in the wake of a lengthy meeting between the elder Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin. In that survey, 49 percent of U.S. adults said that the Trump administration’s relationship with Russia was at least a somewhat serious problem, with 31 within that group judging it to be very serious ― numbers that have changed relatively little in polling conducted since March.” [HuffPost]

REPUBLICANS HAVE SOURED ON THE VALUE OF A COLLEGE EDUCATION ― Mollie Reilly: “More than half of the Republicans surveyed for a Pew Research Center poll released Monday say colleges and universities are hurting the country, a drastic shift from how the same group viewed such institutions two years ago. Fifty-eight percent of Republicans say colleges have a negative effect on the nation, according to the survey, which also polled respondents on institutions like churches, banks, the media and labor unions. Thirty-six percent of GOP survey participants say colleges are having a positive impact on the U.S. Those numbers represent a dramatic change from 2015, when 54 percent of Republicans said they had a positive view of colleges.” [HuffPost, full Pew report]

Is the makeup of the Republican Party itself changing? The survey’s results led some commenters to question whether the findings were affected by people opting out of the Republican Party. “Self-id change over short-term is pretty modest [and] not enough to account for this shift in attitudes,” Pew’s Jocelyn Kiley noted on Twitter. “But long-term, there’s certainly a compositional shift ― HS or less shifted R, coll grads shifted D.”

“We have some evidence that younger people are no longer affiliating with the party,” added Pew’s Brad Jones. “But, if anything, younger Republicans (who stayed with the party) moved in a more negative direction on colleges than older Republicans.”

TRUMP GETS LOW MARKS FOR TEMPERAMENT ― HuffPollster: “President Donald Trump’s policy positions and achievements aren’t terribly popular, but the public gives him the worst marks for his temperament, according to a newly released HuffPost/YouGov survey. Just 30 percent of Americans approve of Trump’s temperament as president, according to the survey. The survey was conducted in late June, soon after Trump launched a Twitter rant against “Morning Joe” co-host Mika Brzezinski. In contrast, 37 percent approve of Trump’s handling of the presidency overall, 38 percent approve of the way Trump is carrying out his policies as president, and 40 percent approve of his positions on policy issues.” [HuffPost]

‘OUTLIERS’ ― Links to the best of news at the intersection of polling, politics and political data:

― Most of the public has questions about President Trump’s dealings with Russia. [Marist]

― New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s home state ratings are worse than ever. [Monmouth]

― Paul Schwartzman and Emily Guskin find that a third of Washingtonians have protested Trump. [WashPost]

― Fox News’ audience is largely Republican, with CNN and MSNBC attracting mostly Democratic viewers. [SurveyMonkey]

― Ezra Klein delves into the powerful effects of partisan identity on American politics. [Vox]

― Harry Enten looks at the field lining up to challenge Senate Democrats in red states. [538]

― Justin McCarthy sees “no clear directive from the American people” for handling health care reform. [Gallup]

― The Roper Center’s Kathleen Weldon rounds up historical polling on premarital sex. [HuffPost]

― Abigail Geiger speaks with Maeve Duggan about the challenges of studying online harassment. [Pew]

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The HuffPost/YouGov poll consisted of 1,000 completed interviews conducted June 29-30 among U.S. adults, using a sample selected from YouGov’s opt-in online panel to match the demographics and other characteristics of the adult U.S. population.

HuffPost has teamed up with YouGov to conduct daily opinion polls. You can learn more about this project and take part in YouGov’s nationally representative opinion polling. More details on the polls’ methodology are available here.

Most surveys report a margin of error that represents some, but not all, potential survey errors. YouGov’s reports include a model-based margin of error, which rests on a specific set of statistical assumptions about the selected sample rather than the standard methodology for random probability sampling. If these assumptions are wrong, the model-based margin of error may also be inaccurate. Click here for a more detailed explanation of the model-based margin of error.

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This article originally appeared on HuffPost.

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