President Donald Trump’s approval rating fell to 38 percent in March, down 3 percentage points from his rating in February, according to a McClatchy-Marist Poll.
The poll shows a decline in the percentage of people who see the president fulfilling his campaign promises, from 71 percent in February to 57 percent in March.
Lee Miringoff, director of The Marist Institute for Public Opinion, said this decline is in part due to Trump’s failure to repeal and replace Obamacare.
Forty-eight percent see the president’s relationship with Vladimir Putin, president of Russia, as negative for the country. Trump’s executive order to ban the entrance of people from six majority-Muslim countries into the nation is opposed by 52 percent of Americans.
But there are areas where Trump is perceived more positively.
The poll shows Americans are positive about the president’s role in improving the economy. But 57 percent think Trump’s economic policies will favor those with higher incomes.
Trump’s approval among Republicans is still high, at 78 percent, but has decreased from February.
Miringoff said this decrease could be problematic for the president.
“I am sure his fellow Republicans in Congress are keeping a watch on how the president is doing, not only nationally but among the Republican base as well,” he said. “That is something they are going to be looking at in terms of positioning themselves for the midterm elections.”
Miringoff said Trump’s performance grading, from A through F, is low compared to President Obama’s approval ratings of 58 percent during the same period of his presidency eight years ago.
Amy Sentementes, a Ph.D. candidate in UNC's Department of Political Science, said many of the poll results were not surprising since approval ratings tend to decline after the honeymoon period of the presidency ends.
“President Trump did not win the election with a landslide of support, so I would not expect his approval ratings to be as high as presidents who won in a less contentious race,” she said.
For Sentementes, Trump’s credibility problem among both parties is the most interesting poll finding.
“In an era of hyper-partisanship and increased polarization, Republicans and Democrats often differ in their perceptions of various issues and policy proposals, yet, in this case, their trust in the administration appears to be declining over time,” she said.
Sentementes said Trump’s low approval rating could be due to the promises he made while campaigning.
“Trump's campaign contained a series of simplistic, repeated messages that proved persuasive to many voters,” she said.
U.S. Congress’ ratings proved to be low as well in the poll. Sixty-two percent of registered voters disapproved of the Republicans' performance, and 54 percent of registered voters disapproved of the Democrats’ job performance.
The poll also showed the most trusted institutions in the U.S. are the FBI and CIA, while the media and congress are the least trusted.
Miringoff said the loss of support from Trump’s Republican base will be something the institute will keep an eye on.
“I think is very noteworthy and something that clearly we will look at in future polls to see if that is the beginning of a trend or has leveled off where it is right now,” he said.
To get the day's news and headlines in your inbox each morning, sign up for our email newsletters.