Less than a month after Donald Trump took office, the public's initial impressions of the new president are strongly felt, deeply polarized and far more negative than positive, a Pew Research Center poll released Thursday shows.
The national survey, conducted between February 7 and 12 among 1,503 adults, finds that Trump's overall job approval is 39 percent, while 56 percent disapprove his job performance.
The intensity of the public's early views of Trump is striking: Nearly half (46 percent) strongly disapprove of his job performance, while 29 percent strongly approve.
This level of strong disapproval already surpasses strong disapproval for Barack Obama at any point during the eight years of his presidency.
The only occasion when strong disapproval of George W. Bush was higher than for Trump currently was in December 2008, near the end of his presidency.
While all presidents dating back to Ronald Reagan initially attracted at least modest support from the opposing party, just 8 percent of Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents approve of his job performance.
By contrast, 84 percent of Republicans and Republican leaners approve of the way he is handling his job as president.
The survey, however, finds that the public gives positive marks to Trump on keeping his promises (60 percent) and his ability to get things done (54 percent).
But, on seven other traits and characteristics - ranging from his temperament to whether he is a good manager - he is viewed more negatively. ■
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