President Donald Trump retains overwhelming support from Republican voters in the final days of his term, an NBC News poll conducted after a mob of his supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol shows.
Nearly nine in 10 Republicans approve of Trump's job performance, according to the survey, a figure virtually unchanged from just ahead of the November contest. Eighty-nine percent of Republicans said they approved of Trump before the election, compared to 87% in the most recent poll.
The poll, which comes as Trump faces an unprecedented second impeachment trial in the Senate, suggests that Republican support for the president did not waver as a result of the Jan. 6 attack in Washington, in which Trump supporters violently delayed the certification of President-elect Joe Biden's Electoral College victory.
The data foreshadows the political trouble GOP leaders could face if they attempt to sideline the outgoing president. Trump and his allies have threatened to work against Republicans who refused to back his attempts to reverse the results of the 2020 election.
Overall, Trump's approval rating was 43%, well within the same narrow range throughout his entire term in office. Trump's approval was 44% in February of 2017, shortly after he was inaugurated. Experts have said that the stability of Trump's ratings reflect an extraordinarily polarized U.S. electorate.
The poll was conducted between Sunday and Wednesday and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points. Trump was impeached by the House of Representatives on Wednesday by a vote of 232-197. Every Democrat and 10 Republicans voted to impeach.
The poll also revealed that Americans remain about evenly divided on whether Trump should be removed from office, CNBC earlier reported. Those divisions fall sharply along partisan lines, with nearly nine in 10 Democrats supporting his removal and just one in 10 Republicans saying the same. Independents oppose removing the president by a margin of 45% in favor to 53% against.
Biden will be inaugurated on Jan. 20.
The numbers show that Trump continues to have a strong hold on the loyalty of Republican voters even on his way out the door. Republicans were evenly divided on the question of whether they are primarily supporters of Trump or the party.
Among Republicans who primarily support Trump, his job approval stands at 98%. For those who primarily support the party, it is 81%.
For most in the party, the attack on the Capitol, which left five dead, did not affect their support for the president, while many said that it had bolstered their approval.
Two-thirds of Trump supporters said the president's comments and actions since the Jan. 6 attack did not shift their views, while nearly a third — 28% — said that the events had reinforced their thinking. Only 5% said they now regretted their vote.
Trump has remained locked out of Twitter, Facebook and other social media platforms since Jan. 6 after continuing to falsely assert that the election was rigged.
He told the rioters in a video posted during the afternoon of the riot to "go home" but added that "we love you" and "you're very special." Under pressure, he acknowledged on Jan. 7 there would be an orderly transition of power. He has said he will not attend Biden's inauguration.
While Trump's support among voters remains essentially constant, a growing number of prominent Republicans have publicly broken with him since the attacks on the Capitol. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., reportedly believes Trump's conduct was impeachable, though he has remained publicly neutral.
Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., the No. 3 Republican in the House of Representatives, was one of the Republicans to vote to impeach the president. Some Trump administration officials, including Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, resigned as a result of the riot.
The poll of 1000 registered voters was conducted January 10-13, 2021, by Republican firm Public Opinion Strategies and Democratic firm Hart Research. The margin of error for registered voters is +/- 3.1 percentage points.
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