Rasmussen: President Trump’s approval rating has slipped

Monday’s Presidential Tracking Poll from Rasmussen Reports shows that President Trump’s overall approval rating has slipped below 40% for the first time since he took office.

According to its most recent data, 39% of likely U.S. voters approve of the president’s job performance, while 61% disapprove.

These figures include 26% who strongly approve of the way Trump is performing and 49% who strongly disapprove, which gives him a presidential approval index rating of -23.

Voters favored Trump’s promise to sign a bill that would impose new economic sanctions on Russia, agreeing that sanctions work and make this country safer. 

More than half of participants from both major political parties continue to say that “they are moving away from the positions of their party’s leaders,” according to data which shows that 67% of Republicans now believe that GOP lawmakers have lost touch with their voters throughout the nation during the past several years. This number is significantly higher than it was in February.

On the other hand, 44% of Democrats say the same about their leaders, which is little more than a ten percent increase from before.

Typically fair to President Trump, Rasmussen Reports explained that the reason its job approval ratings for the president don’t usually show as dramatic a change as some other polls is that they make a concerted effort to get an actual cross-section of the country. In their words, “[i]t depends on how you ask the question and whom you ask.”

“When tracking President Trump’s job approval on a daily basis, people sometimes get so caught up in the day-to-day fluctuations that they miss the bigger picture,” explained the pollster, noting that Rasmussen Reports compiles the numbers on a full-month basis to gain an understanding of the longer-term trends.

Rasmussen is a pioneer in the use of automated telephone polling techniques. They explain that the automated survey process is the same as traditional, operator-assisted research firms such as Gallup, Harris, and Roper. However, traditional companies rely on phone banks, boiler rooms, and operator-assisted technology, while Rasmussen’s automated polling systems use a single, digitally-recorded voice to conduct the interview.

When it comes to daily tracking surveys, automated technology ensures that every respondent hears the same question, from the same voice, asked with the same inflection, every single time.

“All Rasmussen Reports’ survey questions are digitally recorded and fed to a calling program that determines question order, branching options, and other factors. Calls are placed to randomly-selected phone numbers through a process that ensures appropriate geographic representation. Typically, calls are placed from 5 pm to 9 pm local time during the week. Saturday calls are made from 11 am to 6 pm local time and Sunday calls from 1 pm to 9 pm local time,” according to the research firm, which makes an effort to reach people who don’t use landline telephones anymore.

An online survey tool interviews randomly selected participants from a demographically diverse panel. When the surveys are completed, “the raw data is processed through a weighting program to ensure that the sample reflects the overall population in terms of age, race, gender, political party, and other factors. The processing step is required because different segments of the population answer the phone in different ways. For example, women answer the phone more than men, older people are home more and answer more than younger people, and rural residents typically answer the phone more frequently than urban residents.”

Population targets are determined by census bureau data.

When it comes to political surveys, Rasmussen relies on census bureau data to give them a starting point. They use a series of screening questions about voting history, interest in the current campaign, and likely voting intentions to identify likely voters.

Finally, considering each state’s voting history, national trends, and recent polling in particular areas, Rasmussen Reports determines its partisan weighting targets through a dynamic weighting system.

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