NEW YORK (Reuters) – US approval of President Donald Trump’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic has fallen to the lowest level on record, the latest Reuters / Ipsos opinion poll shows, when new cases of COVID-19 and Trump emerged. He was widely criticized for suggesting that he wanted to slow down the tests.
The June 22-23 poll also found that most Americans want former Trump national security adviser John Bolton to testify before Congress under oath, after charging Trump in a new book of wrongdoing, including seeking Chinese President Xi Jinping’s help in winning reelection.
The survey shows that 37% of Americans approved of the way Trump responded to the pandemic, the lowest on record since Reuters / Ipsos began asking the question in early March. 58% said they disapproved.
Just over four months into the November 3 general election, Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential candidate, leads Trump by 10 percentage points among registered voters, according to the latest poll, slightly below a 13-point lead. in a similar poll last week.
Trump has been slow to publicly acknowledge the severity of the coronavirus outbreak, which has so far killed more than 120,000 Americans, and has pressured states to reopen before experts said it was safe to do so.
At his first post-pandemic rally in Oklahoma on Saturday, the president told thousands of supporters that the tests were a “double-edged sword” and that he asked health officials to reduce the tests in response to the public concern about the growing number. of the cases.
Administration officials said Tuesday that Trump did not, in fact, ask them to stop the testing, which is a way to track and eventually control the spread of the disease.
Cases have increased 25% nationally, according to the latest seven-day count, led by spikes in several states such as Texas, Arizona, and Florida that have been more forgiving of social distancing.
Trump has consistently discouraged support among a wide swath of voters since March. Americans are increasingly critical of their response to the pandemic and a wave of protests following the police murder of George Floyd, a black man in Minneapolis, on May 25.
Members of Trump’s Republican Party also appeared to be more pessimistic than at any other time during his presidency. Only 43% said they thought the country was heading in the “right direction,” the lowest level recorded by the Reuters / Ipsos poll since Trump took office in January 2017.
Trump has faced an unusual stream of criticism from members of the military establishment such as James Mattis, his first defense secretary, for his militarized response to the protests. More recently, Bolton said Trump was not fit to be president and accused him in his new book of routinely obstructing justice.
58% of Americans, 81% of Democrats and 37% of Republicans, said they would like to see Bolton testify under oath about his experiences in the Trump administration.
Bolton, who refused to do so last year as part of the House impeachment proceedings against Trump, seemed to confirm one of the investigation’s central allegations in his book, saying Trump wanted Ukraine to investigate Biden and her son Hunter as a condition of receiving security help from the United States.
However, Americans seem less interested in another lengthy impeachment investigation, so close to the election. 41% said they wanted Congress to open another investigation into Trump, while 39% said they opposed it and 20% said they were “not sure.”
The Reuters / Ipsos survey was conducted online, in English, across the United States. It collected responses from 1,115 adults, including 503 Democrats and 408 Republicans. It has a credibility interval, a measure of precision, of 3 percentage points.
Report by Chris Kahn; Soyoung Kim and Leslie Adler’s Edition