Poll: Americans favor their own governor’s leadership to Donald Trump’s on pandemic

Trump DeSantis
Same poll finds half of working Americans impacted financially by coronavirus crisis.

Twice as many Americans believe their own Governor handled the coronavirus crisis better than President Donald Trump, according to a new NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist Poll released Wednesday.

The survey found 64% of voters believed the Governor of their own state was outperforming Trump. Just 32% felt better about the job the President was doing.

There’s a stark difference in partisan views, with 73% of Republican respondents favoring Trump to their Governor. Marist did not provide state-by-state data but did breakout results by region. In the South, 57% have more faith in their Governor while 38% prefer the President’s handling of the situation, the best results for the President out of any region.

The poll also asked specifically about Trump’s handing of the economy compared to individuals’ own Governors. State leaders still performed better, with 54% favoring their Governor’s response and 39% preferring Trump’s.

The same poll found 50% of working Americans found themselves or someone in their household impacted financially by the pandemic.

That’s a significant jump from the last time the poll was taken in March. At that point, 18% of individuals felt an economic impact in their own home.

Results discarded responses from those who are retired or were already not employed before the crisis began.

The results show the COVID-19 crisis has become a pocketbook issue as well as a public health crisis. The compounding results have hurt Trump politically, and in his greatest area of strength— the handling of the economy.

A majority 55% of Americans disapprove of how Trump has handled COVID-19. That’s up from 49% in the last poll.

Notably, the poll still shows 44% approve of the President’s approach, which remains unchanged from last month.

With a presumptive Democratic nominee for President clear, the poll found 55% believe former Vice President Joe Biden would better handle the COVID-19 crisis than Trump. That includes 55% of voters who identify themselves as independents. About 40% believe Trump is better handling the situation that Biden could.

The poll also shows Biden holds an edge with voters on economic leadership. Biden outperforms Trump with 51% who believe he’d better handle the economy than Trump, while 40% have more faith in the incumbent in that area. Here, independents remain more closely divided, but with 47% preferring Biden and 45% favoring Trump.

The poll found a stark partisan divide in terms of Republicans and Democrats on political preference. But it also showed differing views among Democrats and Republicans on how the crisis should be handled.

About 84% of Democrats say it’s a bad idea for Americans to return to work right now, while 51% of Republicans this it would be a good idea to restore business. About 64% of independents want to continue stay-at-home policies. About 65% of those polled overall say America is not ready to return to work.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is expected to unveil a phased plan today for Florida to reopen business.

But on other issues there was broad bipartisan agreement. About 91% of Americans, for example, agree it’s a bad idea to let people attend sporting events without more testing.

A high 85% feel schools should not reopen right now.

About 80% feel it’s a bad idea to allowing dining in at restaurants.

The poll has a margin of error of 3.4%

Jacob Ogles

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at [email protected].


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