A new Pew Research survey released Wednesday indicates that more Republicans are now backing Trump over House and Senate leaders.
In the days leading up to Trump’s first official address to a joint session of Congress, a survey conducted by the Pew Research Center on Feb. 12 among 1.503 adults found that 52 percent of Republicans are more inclined to trust the president over GOP congressional leaders when the two sides disagree.
“About half of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents (52%) say that if Trump and Republican congressional leaders disagree on an issue, they would be more likely to trust Trump. About a third (34%) say they would trust GOP leaders if they have a disagreement with the president.”
However, younger Republicans (under age 40) are listed in the analysis as the only subgroup “who say they are more inclined to trust Republican congressional leaders over Trump in the case of a disagreement between them. Just 36% of Republicans under 40 say they would be more likely to trust Trump in this scenario, while 52% say they would more likely to trust Republican leaders. Majorities of older Republicans say they would be more likely to trust Trump.”
Meanwhile, the majority of Democrats are urging their leaders to oppose Trump:
“Nearly three-quarters of Democrats and Democratic leaners — 72 percent — say their bigger concern is that congressional Democrats will not do enough to oppose Trump and his policies,” said the survey analysis. Just 20% say they are more concerned that Democrats in Congress will go too far opposing Trump and his policies.”
There are modest differences in these views across subgroups of Democrats: Large majorities of liberal Democrats (77%) and conservative and moderate Democrats (68%) both say their bigger concern is that Democrats in Congress will not do enough to oppose Trump’s policies.
Based on the survey analysis, here is a breakdown of how both parties are coming to terms with the changing political climate:
GOP leaders’ job approval improves. Job approval for Republican congressional leaders has increased sharply – from 19% to 34% – since September 2015. In contrast, there has been little change in Democratic leaders’ job ratings (34% then, 37% now). The rise in approval of GOP leaders is largely attributable to a turnaround among Republicans: 68% approve of GOP leaders’ performance now; only 26% did so two years ago.
Low favorability for congressional leaders. None of the four top congressional leaders – Republicans Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan, Democrats Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi – is viewed particularly favorably. The shares offering no opinion of each leader are relatively high, particularly Schumer, the new Senate Democratic leader (36% no opinion).
H/T: Washington Examiner
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