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Trump's Job Approval Rating Steady at Lower Level

Trump's Job Approval Rating Steady at Lower Level

Story Highlights

  • 38% currently approve of the job Donald Trump is doing as president
  • Record partisan gap, with 91% of Republicans, 2% of Democrats approving
  • Trump's job approval rating is down among most demographic groups

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- President Donald Trump's approval rating is holding steady at a lower level after a sharp drop in late May and early June, with 38% of Americans currently approving of the job he is doing.

Line graph. President Donald Trumps job approval rating is 38% in the latest Gallup poll, similar to 39% in early June, but remaining down from 49% in early May.

In early May, Trump's approval tied his personal best at 49% -- before it sank amid nationwide protests over racial injustice after the death of George Floyd. Now his approval rating stands just three percentage points above his personal low of 35%, registered on four separate occasions in 2017.

The latest results are based on a June 8-30 Gallup poll. While Trump's overall job approval rating is essentially unchanged from the prior May 28-June 4 poll, it does show some improvement among Republicans, from 85% to 91%. However, the current poll also indicates the president's approval rating has dropped among independents, from 39% to 33%, as well as among Democrats, from 5% to 2%.

The current 89-point difference between Republicans' and Democrats' ratings of Trump is the largest partisan gap Gallup has ever measured for a presidential approval rating in a single survey. Trump had previously registered 87-point gaps in late January and early February polls, conducted around the time of his Senate impeachment trial and ultimate acquittal.

Largest Party Differences in Presidential Job Approval Ratings, Single Gallup Polls
  Poll dates Republicans Independents Democrats Rep-Dem gap
    % % % pct. pts.
Trump 2020 Jun 8-30 91 33 2 +89
Trump 2020 Feb 3-16 93 43 6 +87
Trump 2020 Jan 16-29 94 42 7 +87
Trump 2020 Apr 1-14 93 39 7 +86
Trump 2019 Nov 1-14 90 38 4 +86
Trump 2019 Sep 3-15 91 38 5 +86
Trump 2019 Mar 1-10 90 33 4 +86
Trump 2018 Nov 5-11 91 34 5 +86
Obama 2012 Oct 29-Nov 4 6 51 92 -86

Trump Approval Slips Below Majority Level Among White Americans, Men

Before the recent downturn in public support, the president had averaged 47% job approval this year. The eight-point average decline from early 2020 to late May and June is apparent among all key subgroups.

Trump now has approval ratings below the majority level among groups that are typically more favorable to him, including non-Hispanic white Americans, men, older Americans, Southerners and those without a college degree.

He does retain majority support among white Americans without a college degree, at 57%, albeit down from 66% among the group in January to early May.

The accompanying table shows the changes in Trump's job approval among demographic subgroups over the past month compared with the first five months of 2020.

Changes in President Donald Trump's Job Approval Rating
  January to early May Late May to June Change
  % % pct. pts.
U.S. adults 47 39 -8
Men 53 46 -7
Women 42 32 -10
18-29 39 30 -9
30-49 46 36 -10
50-64 52 43 -9
65+ 51 47 -4
Non-Hispanic white 57 48 -9
Non-Hispanic Black 16 10 -6
Hispanic 34 26 -8
College degree 37 30 -7
No college degree 52 44 -8
Race/Ethnicity + Education  
White, college degree 42 33 -9
White, no college degree 66 57 -9
East 40 27 -13
Midwest 51 40 -11
South 53 48 -5
West 41 35 -6
January to early May figures based on an average of ratings from eight polls. Late May to June figures based on an average of ratings from two polls.

Bottom Line

The drop in Trump's job approval rating puts him in the company of George H.W. Bush and Jimmy Carter -- the last two one-term presidents, who also had sub-40% approval ratings in June of their reelection years. Earlier this year, Trump's approval ratings were closer to those of George W. Bush and Barack Obama at a similar point in their presidencies, the last two presidents who won a second term.

Trump can hope for an outcome similar to the 1948 election, when voters elected Harry Truman to a second term with a June approval rating (40%) only slightly better than what Trump currently has.

There is no consistent historical pattern for the trajectory of presidential approval ratings from June through Election Day in incumbent reelection years. About half of the presidents whose approval ratings Gallup measured after June showed some improvement, and the other half did not.

The Truman exception aside (the 40% June approval rating was the last pre-election measure by Gallup), Obama had the largest increase through the summer and fall of a reelection year, with six points. If Trump duplicates that feat and gets his approval to the mid-40s, his reelection would still be very much in doubt. The absence of significant third-party candidates that could splinter the anti-incumbent vote -- as happened in 1948, 1980 and 1992 -- makes getting closer to majority job approval even more critical for Trump.

Explore President Trump's approval ratings and compare them with those of past presidents in the Gallup Presidential Job Approval Center.

Learn more about how the Gallup Poll Social Series works.

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