Poll: Only 32% in RI approved of Trump’s first year

In this Jan. 9, 2018, file photo, President Donald Trump listens during a meeting with lawmakers on immigration policy in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File)

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – A new poll suggests Rhode Island is among the states that were most unhappy with President Trump during his first year in office.

A Gallup survey released Tuesday shows Trump’s job approval rating averaged just 32% in Rhode Island during 2017, with 62% of Rhode Islanders disapproving of his performance. The poll surveyed 575 adults in Rhode Island between Jan. 20 and Dec. 30, and carries a margin of error of plus or minus 6 percentage points.

Trump was equally unpopular in neighboring Connecticut, where his job approval was 31% in 2017, and even more unpopular in Massachusetts, where it was 27%, according to Gallup. The latter finding mirrors a WBUR poll earlier this month that put Trump’s job approval at 29% in the Bay State.

While Trump won a landslide victory in Rhode Island’s 2016 Republican presidential primary, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton beat him by double-digits in the state in November despite performing considerably weaker than Barack Obama. The state has not backed a GOP presidential nominee since it went for Ronald Reagan in 1984.

Trump is still doing better in Rhode Island than the last Republican president, George W. Bush, was at the end of his term. A Brown University poll in August 2008 found only 11% of Rhode Islanders thought Bush was doing an excellent or good job at the time, while 67% said Bush was doing a poor job.

Gallup said Trump’s approval rating was at or above 50% in 12 states, with West Virginia giving him his best marks at 61% approval. His worst state was Vermont, at 26%. Rhode Island was his eighth-worst state.

Ted Nesi (tnesi@wpri.com) covers politics and the economy for WPRI.com. He is a weekly panelist on Newsmakers and hosts Executive Suite. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook