Through the lengthy mess that the Trump administration has proven to be, one fact has remained constant — Donald Trump is obsessed with his public image. Sure, he has other things to be occupying himself with, since he is the leader of the United States, after all, but instead, he spends the majority of his time managing his base’s perception of him through such mechanisms as his incendiary tweets. None of these tweets have been enough to save him from a down in the dumps approval rating.
The first measurement of Trump’s approval rating from Gallup in the year 2018 has now come in, and it has the president’s approval rating at a slightly lower level than the last one measured in 2017.
Towards the end of December, the president experienced a temporary boost in his approval rating, finishing the year with a 39 percent approval rating, according to Gallup. That 39 percent approval rating was the highest measured by Gallup for the president since July of last year.
Now, in the numbers released for the first week of 2018, the president’s approval rating has fallen two points to 37 percent.
Check out the graph of the president’s approval rating as measured by Gallup over time below.
Gallup changed its reporting methods for the president’s approval rating as 2018 dawned, switching from reporting the numbers daily to reporting them weekly. In that light, these are the first numbers from the polling organization in the new year.
Gallup’s numbers are pretty comparable to the current RealClearPolitics estimation of the president’s approval rating, based on an average of relevant polls.
It’s not as though the low numbers for the president’s approval rating are surprising. The most recent drop in Gallup’s measurement corresponds to a week in which the White House has been rocked by a number of scandalous revelations connected to the publication of the contentious book, Fire and Fury by author Michael Wolff.
Thanks to that book, the 2016 meeting involving Donald Trump Jr. and an allegedly Kremlin-connected lawyer who Trump Jr. had been promised would bring him dirt on Hillary Clinton is back at the forefront of the nation’s political conversation.
The book reveals former Trump ally Steve Bannon to believe that meeting to be “treasonous,” although Bannon eventually apologized for the tone of that and other comments of his included in the book.
Bannon’s apology wasn’t prompt enough to avoid harsh criticism from the president, who quipped that the Breitbart executive had “lost his mind.”
Concurrent to this, the president has only made himself look like even more of a fool than before in trying to respond to the allegations against him and his team made in the book.
For example, convincing few others besides himself, he took to Twitter to shout about how much of a supposedly stable genius he is following the book’s publication.
Considering all of these factors, it’s unsurprising that the president’s approval rating has ticked down slightly as the new year dawned — and his party is certainly not going to thank him for his belligerence later this year.
Featured Image via Chris Kleponis/ Pool via Bloomberg