A slim majority of Utahns say they disapprove of President Donald Trump's job performance.
A new Utah Political Trends Panel poll from UtahPolicy.com and Y2 Analytics shows 53% of Utahns either “somewhat” or “strongly” disapprove of President Donald Trump’s job performance. That includes a whopping 44% who say they “strongly” disapprove. 42% of registered voters in the state say they approve of the president’s job performance, but only 25% say they “strongly’ approve. 4% say they neither approve or disapprove of Trump, while just 1% had no opinion.
The survey was conducted among 2,608 registered voters between June 27 and July 17. During the time the survey was taken, several noteworthy events involving President Donald Trump took place, including the ratcheting up of tensions between the U.S. and Iran over the downing of a drone. Trump ordered a retaliatory airstrike, then canceled it at the last minute. President Donald Trump also announced, then delayed, ICE raids targeting undocumented immigrants during the span, and became the first American president to cross into North Korea. Trump also gave up on his bid to include a citizenship question on the 2020 census and ignited a controversy over his racist tweets attacking four Democratic women of color.
The new numbers show Trump’s approval rating has remained more or less stagnant since the 2016 election. Trump carried the state in 2016, but only got 45.5% of the vote because of the presence of Evan McMullan on the ballot who pulled in 21.5%. Trump has still not won a majority of support in the state in the three years since. The latest poll puts his net approval rating underwater at -9.
Mitt Romney carried Utah by 48 points in 2012. John McCain outpaced Barack Obama in the Beehive State by 28 points in 2008, and George W. Bush triumphed in Utah by 46 and 41 points in 2004 and 2000. Trump is clearly underperforming in Utah.
UtahPolicy.com pollster Kelly Patterson of Y2 Analytics says Trump’s low popularity is likely because the sample was registered voters, who are paying more attention to current events than other Utahns.
“President Donald Trump has never enjoyed widespread popularity in the state of Utah,” said Patterson. “Factors that may account for that are his policies on immigration, his combative style, his personal life, and his not being a true conservative. All of these would play some role to dampen enthusiasm for the president.”
Patterson adds that several prominent Utah Republican political figures, including Sen. Mitt Romney, are not shy about speaking out about what they see as shortcomings from President Donald Trump.
“The recent remarks by Sen. Romney place President Donald Trump’s actions in a wider context, which serves to help voters remember there is both good and bad with President Donald Trump,” he said.
Trump remains deeply unpopular in Utah’s 4th Congressional District as well, which narrowly elected Democrat Ben McAdams in 2018 over Republican Mia Love. Fully half (50%) of registered voters in UT04 say they strongly disapprove of Trump, while 9% somewhat disapprove. Just 37% in UT04 approve of Trump. That number is surprising as the district is rated as R+13, meaning its 13-points more Republican than the national average. Trump carried UT04 by 7 points.
Surprisingly, half of the voters in Utah’s 2nd District, held by Rep. Chris Stewart, also say they strongly disapprove of President Donald Trump’s performance, with another 8% who are somewhat disapproving. Stewart has cleaved closely to Trump since he won the White House in 2016, acting as one of his most strident supporters in the House. That strong backing for Trump from Stewart likely won’t hurt him as he runs for re-election next year. Stewart’s district is gerrymandered heavily in favor of Republicans. Voters in Salt Lake County broke sharply against Stewart in support of his Democratic opponent Shireen Ghorbani last year, but Stewart still won 56% of the overall vote because the Republican-dominated areas in the district more than made up for his lack of support in the urban areas.
44% of registered voters in Utah’s 1st Congressional District disapprove of Trump while 42% approve. 50% of voters in CD3 disapprove of Trump’s job performance, while 46% approve.
The poll also found that men in Utah are divided over the president’s job performance, with 47% approving and 48% disapproving. Women strongly disapprove of President Donald Trump, with 59% giving him negative marks for his job performance and just 36% rating him positively.
There is a significant difference in attitudes toward Trump between younger and older Utahns. Millennials are firmly against the president, while older voters are more supportive.
- More than ⅔ (67%) between 18-34 disapprove of Trump’s job performance, with 53% firmly against him. Just 27% approve.
- 56% of Utahns between 35-44 say they disapprove of the president, while 36% support.
- A majority of Utahns (53%) between 45-54 approve of Trump, while 44% disapprove.
- Utahns between 55-64 are split, with 48% approving and 49% registering disapproval.
- Elderly Utahns 65 and older are also nearly evenly divided, with 50% saying they approve and 47% disapproving.
Not surprisingly, Republicans and conservative voters are big fans of Trump, while Democrats and liberals are not.
- 87% of self-identified “strong” Republicans approve of Trump’s job performance. Just 8% disapprove
- 49% of “not very strong” Republicans approve of Trump’s job performance, while 40% disapprove.
- 95% of “strong” Democrats and 98% of “not very strong” Democrats say they disapprove.
- 88% of “strong” conservatives give Trump a positive rating for his job performance. 8% disapprove.
- 60% of “moderate” conservatives approve of Trump, while 34% disapprove.
- 96% of “strong” liberals and 95% of “moderate” liberals disapprove.
Political independents have different views of Trump’s job performance based on which way they lean.
- Independents who lean toward Republicans approve of Trump 64-31%.
- Independents leaning toward Democrats disapprove 98-1%
- True independents disapprove by a 20-point margin, 57-37%
The Utah Political Trends Panel was conducted among a random sample of 2,608 registered Utah voters using an online survey. The results were weighted to reflect Utah’s demographic makeup. The survey has a margin of error +/- 2.1%. You can read more about the survey’s methodology here.