A new Gallup poll says that roughly the same number of people believe Donald Trump deserves re-election right now as those who believed Barack Obama deserved re-election in 2010, and Bill Clinton deserved re-election in 1994.
According to Gallup, 37 percent of people said Trump deserves re-election in 2020. In October 2010, 37 percent also believe that Barack Obama deserved re-election. In October 1994, 38 percent believed that Bill Clinton deserved re-election. As with Obama and Clinton, the results were largely split along partisan lines, with Trump getting the support of 78 percent of Republicans as opposed to only 6 percent of Democrats. Less than a third of independents polled said that Trump deserved re-election.
The one recent president to buck the trend was George W. Bush; 60 percent of voters polled in September 2002, one year after 9/11, said that Bush deserved re-election. (He did not, because he sucked.)
According to RealClearPolitics, Trump’s approval ratings have ticked up slightly from a presidency-low average of 37 percent in December 2017, shortly before he signed the tax bill. On the whole, however, Trump’s approval/disapproval split still sits at nearly -13, according to RCP’s averages.
Obviously, it’s still early. We’re about a year away from the real start of the 2020 campaign, and the lack of a clear frontrunner to take on Trump is surely contributing to the fact that even 37 percent of people believe that four more years of what we’re already suffering through is a good thing. But the fact that Obama and Clinton were both able to rebound enough with voters in order to comfortably win re-election just two years later means Trump could absolutely do the same, and that should scare the shit out of everyone.
There is one silver lining for Democrats, however: in the years that a majority of voters said they didn’t want either to be re-elected, Obama and Clinton both lost their House majorities in wave elections.