Despite an onslaught of negative media coverage, President Donald Trump is maintaining net approval for his handling of the Coronavirus.
A new poll from Morning Consult found that 47% of voters approve of his handling of the Coronavirus, while 43% disapprove. While he maintains net approval on the issue, the media’s disinformation campaign has taken a toll, as Trump’s approval on handling the pandemic was 61% in early February, with only 21% disapproving. China has been waging a propaganda war to blame the pandemic on the U.S., which some of our journalists are inadvertently (or advertently – who knows) assisting by branding anyone calling the Wuhan Coronavirus as the “Wuhan Coronavirus” as racist.
Interestingly enough, when you break down some of President Trump’s actions individually instead of framing the question as being across the board, there’s overwhelming bipartisan support. For example, according to a new poll from Rasmussen Reports: “80% of American Adults agree with the federal government’s decision to temporarily ban travelers from China and nearly all European countries to prevent the possible spread of coronavirus. Only 12% disagree.” Broken down by party, 91% of Republicans and 78% of Democrats agreed.
- Seventy percent (70%) think the schools in their state should be closed in response to the virus. President Trump has encouraged Americans to “engage in schooling from home” for the time being. Just 19% disagree, but 11% are undecided. Democrats (82%) were actually more likely than Republicans (68%) to support this.
- When asked which is closer to their own thinking, 64% of Americans say the numerous event closures and postponements in response to coronavirus are good thinking. Twenty-six percent (26%), however, view them as a panicked overreaction. Ten percent (10%) are not sure. Similar to the previous case, a larger percentage of Democrats (72%) than Republicans agreed (62%).
Rasmussen also recently found that a plurality of U.S. voters (42%) believe that China should pay at least some of the financial costs associated with the virus, while 36% disagreed and 27% were uncertain. Support for making China pay was highest among Republicans.
While the media has clearly played a role in souring public opinion about the Trump administration’s response to the Coronavirus outbreak, independents aren’t thrilled with the coverage.
According to Rasmussen, among all adults, 42% found the media’s coverage to be excellent or good, while 21% found it fair, and 32% poor (with 5% not sure). There was a clear partisan divide, with Republicans more likely to have negative views of current coverage than the average respondent, and Democrats a more positive view. Only 32% of Republicans found reporting to be excellent or good, while 26% found it fair, and 41% voted it negatively (with only 2% not sure). The numbers for Democrats were 60% excellent/good, 16% fair, and 18% poor (with 5% not sure).
Interestingly enough, the political demographic that rated the media’s coverage the second worst are those who don’t affiliate with either party. Among the unaffiliated (who could be either independents or swing voters), 32% rated coverage excellent or good, while 60% rated it fair or poor (and 9% not sure).
And a poll conducted solely on myself found 100% disapproval of the media’s coverage.