Where does the Trump Presidency stand a fortnight and a half in?

The most recent polling indicates that Donald Trump has a 43% approval and 53% disapproval rating. So he is not exactly loved by the American people, which is odd because he seems so lovable. And, he has told us that the American people love him. And his victory in the November election was unbelievably big league. But, that's how it is, according the scientific polling.

Approval and favorability are apparently slightly different, but the pattern holds. The same polling tells us that the American people have a 45% favorable attitude about the president, which would be tremendous for any product in a market economy. But for a president it is not so good, as a majority of Americans, 52%, look at the president with an unfavorable eye.

But what about some of the specific, Trump Brand signature issues? How's he doing, and what do people think?

Building The Wall

The wall is still not built, but Trump still intends to build it. But, the promise was that Trump would "make Mexico pay for it." The president has now learned that you can't do that, and it is in fact not going to happen. And, the wall is still not built yet.

According to this recent poll, 56% of Americans oppose building the all, 37% are in favor of it, if Americans are paying for it.

The Muslim Ban

Trump promised to ban Muslims from the United States, and to practice extreme vetting. One of the main reasons he got elected was because of this promise. How's that going?

A Trump Tower in Turkey, a Muslim country not banned.  A Trump Tower in Turkey, a Muslim country not banned.

Trump's idea of "extreme vetting" seems to be "don't let anyone in who is trying to get in legally." Which, of course, leaves the death squads that are streaming across our borders leave to come, but leaves people like graduate students, professors, folks who went overseas to visit their grandmothers, etc. in the lurch.

Also, the ban on Muslims only banned some Muslims, from certain countries, so Muslims from countries where Trump does business are unaffected. So there may be an ethical issue there.

As you know, a key Federal court ruled unanimously to uphold a lower court decision to stay the ban because it negatively affects people and states. No higher court ruling has come down about the Second Amendment violation but that may happen later. There are more law suits against this ban than hairs on a dog, so we can expect a lot more news in this regard.

Meanwhile, the recent pol shows that 49% of Americans are opposed to the ban, with 45% in favor of it.

More interestingly, though, the vast majority of Americans, a whopping 66%, think Trump's ban was poorly executed (27% thought everything went just fine). A majority of Americans recognized the "Muslim Ban" as an effort to ban Muslims. (Trump's people claim it never was, even when it was called a "Muslim Ban.") A strong majority (65% over 22%) do not think Muslims should be banned. In a sense, the courts are helping Trump out here, by shutting down this whole operation so we can move past what has turned out to be one of the most self damaging political nosedives witnessed in American history.

By the way, a strong majority of Americans trust Judges over Donald Trump to make the right decisions for the United States.

Repealing and Replacing Obamacare

Trump promised to repeal and replace Obamacare. Most observers were under the impression that Trump and Congress, between them, had no idea what to replace Obamacare with. Boy, were they ever right! Congress made a couple of initial procedural moves that will allow them to later undo Obamacare, ran in to major opposition, forgot to have any ideas about reforming Obamacare, and then stopped.

"The White House response is that he's not going to release his tax returns. We litigated this all through the election. People didn't care.  They voted for him, and let me make this very clear: Most Americans are -- are very focused on what their tax returns will look like while President Trump is in office, not what his look like." "The White House response is that he's not going to release his tax returns. We litigated this all through the election. People didn't care. They voted for him, and let me make this very clear: Most Americans are -- are very focused on what their tax returns will look like while President Trump is in office, not what his look like."

The White House has been mostly silent on the issue. Polls show that a strong plurality of American support Obamacare (far more than those who oppose, with 47%-39% supporting-opposing). A YUGE majority of Americans, 65%, do not want Congress to repeal Obamacare and, rather, keep what works in the plan.

Keeping his Tax Returns Secret

Trump never did release his tax returns. He promised to release them after an "audit" was over. But soon after the election, spokes-minuteman Kellyanne Conway, announced a new policy: since Trump won, it must be true that nobody cares about his tax returns, or why would the majority of Americans have voted for him?

There are two problems with this "logic." First, a majority of Americans voted for Hillary Clinton, not Donald Trump. Second, at present, an overwhelming majority of Americans want Trump to release his tax returns. (58% say yes, 31% say no.)

Keeping his business ties ethical


Screen Shot 2017-02-10 at 1.13.12 PMAt his first press conference, Donald Trump showed us piles of folders containing all of the plans to unlink him from his businesses. A lawyer explained how all the ethical rules would be followed. We were also told that all the ethical rules did not apply to the President anyway, and that nothing would really be done.

The folders, we learned later, were as empty as his earlier promises to disassociate his business and his activities as president. Indeed, just yesterday, Kellyanne Conway went on Fox News, representing the White House, and urged listeners to buy Trump's daughter's products. Perhaps, technically, though I don't know, Trump himself has no direct ties to this business. But it is his daughter's business so legal and ethical constraints apply. Conway should not have made the statement she made.

Had she been a Democrat, the calls for her being fired would never end. But since she is a Republican, there was a minor outcry. But, the event was a clear enough case of unethical behavior that even the FOX news people sensed something was wrong:

The moment three FOX news anchors realize that Kellyanne Conway stepped over the line, legally and ethically. The moment three FOX news anchors realize that Kellyanne Conway stepped over the line, legally and ethically.

By the way, 62% of Americans think Trump should fully divest himself from his businesses.

The Investigation of Voter Fraud

In his never ending but always unsuccessfull effort to not be the Biggest Loser, Trump issued the blatant lie that millions of people, mainly Illegal Immigrants, voted illegally in the last election, and that this is why he actually lost the vote. As you know, great efforts were made to recount the votes in several states, and this showed no problems. Also, the Secretaries of State across the country declared that there was no measurable problem with the voting. The White House has been relatively silent about this issue lately, perhaps because they sensed that the country was against them on this. Indeed, it seems that about 55% of Americans think there was no illegal voting by millions of people in the last election.

Be Presidential

During the election, Trump told us that he'll be big league presidential. I assume this means, among other things, being, or at least, seeming, credible.

How's that going?

Well, the poll I've been referring to all along (see below) pits the New York Times against Trump in credibility, which is appropriate because Trump has been engaging in an aggressive Twitter war against the Paper of Record. The result? 52% of Americans think the NYT is more credible than Trump, 37% think the opposite.

Saturday Night Live, the fictional, comedy, all the stuff is made up TV show of fame, doesn't do quite as well as the New York Times. A mere 48% of Americans put SNL above Trump in credibility, with 43% saying the opposite. So, while it may be stranger than fiction, it seems that Trump is less credible than fiction in the minds of a plurality of Americans.

People are about evenly divided on whether or not Trump should be impeached, with about 46% saying each "yes" and "no." That is a lot of people who want to see his presidency ended immediately. But, one might expect a higher percentage of people saying "Impeach" than indicated here, given all the above information.

Rachel Maddow has a theory as to why more people don't, at the moment, want to see Trump thrown out of office. I'll let her tell you. Watch the whole video, but the key moment starts about 4 minutes.

I hope you watched that whole thing to see how Trump supporters seem to not know about, or care about, the Constitution.

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Remember those clowns a few weeks ago? The scary clowns? I think they were trying to tell us something. Did you know that 235,248,000 people are eligible to vote in the United States? Fewer than 120,000,000 of those people bothered to show up to vote this year, and turnout was considered high. Of…

Oh, they care. Just on that one bit that they think says they can have 50 Cal armaments and that other little bit that says that there's freedom of religion, giving them a right to spout off any ignorant bigotry they want without any consequences (and then they are shocked when there is some form of reprisal).

Trump isn't doing anything!

What a relief.

Well, maybe more will happen when his full cabinet gets voted in.

Maybe he's so unpopular because he hasn't done anything?

Apart from be a three year old with a tantrum fetish.

Not forgetting bedwetter...

But you;re right about a few things. Trying to get a muslim ban, on hold. Ignoring people's property rights for DAPL, but on hold. Most of the executive orders complete insanity bullshit, really unable to be added.

And a fixation on the size (or rather lack) of his inauguration.

Other polling shows that the less intelligent and dishonest citizens (essentially 50% of those who voted for him) believe the Bowling Green Massacre is justification for Trump's immigration ban. That's rickA level stupid.

Google CNN gigapixel to reveal the fake news about the size of his inauguration. Obama's crowd was larger, but the media pic is a deliberate lie.

I'm INCENSED that the White house IGNORED that Bowling Green Massacre!

REFUSED to talk about it, apart from one brief mention, then suddenly it's as if it NEVER HAPPENED!!!

More hiding the truth from The Real People Of America!

"Obama’s crowd was larger, but the media pic is a deliberate lie."

Yeah, showed a bigger crowd (MUCH bigger) and lied about it being a much bigger crowd...

FFS, you're a moron.

God mikeN, just how effing stupid are you?

By Lee D. Witt (not verified) on 10 Feb 2017 #permalink

Take a look at the Gigapixel, and compare to the media lie they showed you representing Trump's crowd. They even chose to present the half of the picture that showed less Trump crowd, but the Gigapixel shows the true size.

How do people feel about Melania Trump's defamation lawsuit going forward? The publication didn't have the resources to go to trial, so they apologized for the article and said they were at fault for the reckless publication, where they said that Melania was a prostitute.

Uh what half? The area that was occupied in Obama's inauguration was filled. Doing a trump and cutting out the massive area that WAS filled for Obama and empty for Trump doesn't lie about the size of the crowd at all.

To cut out the areas that HAD been, for Obama, crowded, just so as not to show that area unoccupied for Trump's limp attraction is to lie about the size (or lack of it) for Trump.

If you'd complained about a city-wide shot or a wider shot for Trump than Obama, you'd have a point.

But you didn't so you don't.

Take a look at Obs link. I think it's a little later than the media photo, showing a little more people for Trump than I remember, and I think a wider shot. Now look at the right and left halves of Trump's crowd. It is not symmetric. The media showed the left half to make Trump's crowd look smaller. Compare the white space in the two halves.

Now look at the Gigapixel, and we find that almost all this whitespace is filled on both halves.

Post normal in action...

Again, not comparing Trump crowd to Obama crowd, but Trump crowd in media photo that was widely circulated vs Gigapixel of Trump crowd.

And you're still working post-normal. The pic was the same area. Why whine about how they could have taken a closer shot? They could have zoomed right in until it looked like Orangina was there on his own. And then you'd be whining about how they misrepresented it.

STILL post-normal in action.

MikeN - you're claim that the MSM is biased is based on CNN's Gigapixel? Isn't CNN part of that mainstream media? Odd.

Since the Gigapixel is a different POV, it's difficult to compare with the Mall shots from the Washington Monument end. My recollection is the side-by-side comparison photos were of crowd size at the same time of day. Is the gigapixel shot from the same time of day as the side-by-side comparison?

There were 193,000 Metro trips taken by 11 a.m. on Inauguration Day 2017. In contrast, there were 317,000 trips taken by the same time on the day of Obama’s second inauguration in 2013. Ridership the morning of Obama’s first inauguration ceremony in 2009 was 513,000 — more than double 2017's.

These numbers would seem to contradict your assertion that the actual crowd size was much larger than perceived.

By Kevin O'Neill (not verified) on 10 Feb 2017 #permalink

Sure you can directly compare photos from different distances and different resolutions as one of the contributing idiots believes.

Wait - no you can't.

More directly - "he hasn't done anything yet" has to be the most disingenuous support for "it's not that bad" there could be. I know that rickA and mikeN care nothing about anyone other than themselves, certainly not children in general, at risk children in particular but they are ignoring the installation of a woman who said she wanted to "defeat" public education in Michigan - and worked her damndest to do it. Now she has the national system to corrupt.

Also - it should need no pointing out but: tea-baggers, idiot libertarians (redundant, I know) and other habitual liars like rickA and mikeN regularly accused President Obama of numerous heinous things despite the fact that none of the accusations were true. Had he behaved the way President Trump has been their responses would have been totally different.

Let's see - what key difference is there between the previous president and the current president that could possible bring out the ire of low-lifes on the right? (Hint: it's obvious when you look at their pictures.)

Whoever it was who made that observation was correct:

History would have turned out way much better if women only had been given the right to vote, and if colored people owned white people.

Heck, we might even have had an actual future if things had gone that way...

By Brainstorms (not verified) on 11 Feb 2017 #permalink

Brainstorms, colored people DID won white people. The word slave comes from Slav. Egypt took slaves from Europe in the 1900s.

Kevin O'Neill, the point was not Obama vs Trump crowd, but depicted Trump crowd vs actual Trump crowd. The gigapixel allows rotation and you can see that the whitespace is full except for some parts that were barricaded. With that picture, an exact crowd size can be determined if anyone bothers to count it.
Yes, it is ironic that CNN is the source of debunking the media lie.

"according the scientific polling" as always based on interviews with about 400 democrats and 100 republicans LOL

Wrong, Sam.

Tell me, how do you manage to make statements you KNOW you haven pulled from your ass and present them with a "LOL" at the stupidity of what YOU JUST MADE UP???

That sort of aberrant blind stupidity is why Trump got elected and is currently shaking you down like you're a free piggy bank to raid.

Because you're SO HAPPY that others are getting the shaft, you're ignoring the pants around your ankles and the dick up your ass.

"Brainstorms, colored people DID won white people."

English much, "Mike". There are plenty of adult education courses for you to apply to.

"The gigapixel allows rotation and you can see that the whitespace is full except for some parts that were barricaded."

So when you kettle a group of people, you're supposed to forget how few there are in the crowd (why were they not barricaded off for the Obama inauguration?) but look at the density of the crowd (literally as well as figuratively for the trump supporters) when they're bunched up.

The point IS Obama vs Trump crowd size.

And Trumps was a tiny feeble limping tiddler of a crowd. Even compared to other presidents.

Know why?

Trumps' assinine claim that it was the biggest crowd in history.

Total bollocks.

MikeN, the actual Trump crowd was likely less than half of Obama's 2009 inauguration. Do you believe this to be true? I do and I think any close examination of all the photographic evidence supports that belief.

By Kevin O'Neill (not verified) on 13 Feb 2017 #permalink

MikeN seems to prefer those "alternative facts" about crowd size.

By Brainstorms (not verified) on 13 Feb 2017 #permalink

Kevin, it was likely a hell of a lot less than half. It was unlikely to have been much more than 250,000. Obama's was about a million in his second term after all that republican gloating "how's that change going for ya!". He got about 1.8 million in his first inauguration.

Some people are saying - I don't know- you tell me - but some people are saying there were lots of Trump supporters on the mall that you couldn't see because their hoods and robes blended into the white ground cover.

By FLwolverine (not verified) on 13 Feb 2017 #permalink

I hear that there may have been some fires lit with two bits of wood to keep the people there warm too.

Just asking if the rumours are true.

~ #'s 25 and 26

"present them with a “LOL” at the stupidity of what YOU JUST MADE UP???"

Yeah, you see a lot of that. It's easy. It's juvenile. It is very stupid. Right wing celebrity loud mouths have used variations of it for decades as a vehicle for turning dim bulbs into agitprop bots.

Essentially you take a shell of simple observational humor, empty it of content, and fill it with weaponized shit before launching it.

See also:
"...a typical Trump speech has the structure of a stand-up routine."

BTW, as a point of interest, Bannon made $$$$ off of the Seinfeld show (unpleasant characters made interesting by an over-used laugh track).

By Obstreperous A… (not verified) on 13 Feb 2017 #permalink

They've decided against it...

By Brainstorms (not verified) on 13 Feb 2017 #permalink

Kevin ONeill that is plausible. The Obama picture looks to be an overflow crowd and has lots of people that are blending into the grass on the sides. Not the 1.8 million number includes the parade route.
Again, my point is about the pic of Trump's crowd shown all over the media vs the actual Trump's crowd.

Trying to figure out why showing trumps crowd, while smaller than Obama's, is not as massively smaller as we thought matters. Maybe to demonstrate there are more vile people than first believed?

"crowd envy"

By Brainstorms (not verified) on 13 Feb 2017 #permalink

"It doesn’t ‘matter’, but it is an example of media lying. They chose to show a half empty crowd, when it is actually full."

You keep believing that, and keep believing that nobody else but you has noticed.

Good lord.

It wasn't full. Unless it was half-full of white males dressed in white frocks with white pointy hoods that obscured their faces. That's about the only thing that would cause them to fade into the white background that makes it painfully obvious that it was at best half-full.

Pretending otherwise is terribly childish.

By Brainstorms (not verified) on 13 Feb 2017 #permalink

No, but there are lots of little green men at the back if you look carefully. Without the gigapixel, people could argue about oblique angles and different viewpoints, as there was another picture at PBS that also revealed the media lie, but again not as clear. For example it couldn't debunk the right half of the picture that was only half as empty.

That's the thing, the white background isn't half full. There are large parts where it is empty or very close to it. This is clearly not the case as seen in other photos.

MikeN -Comparison of the paved areas actually gives an **overestimation ** of the comparative size of the crowds. Even the areas that hold Trump supporters hold far less than the same area held Obama supporters.The side and park areas are also sardine-packed during the Obama inauguration - they are basically empty during Trump's.

Take the Gigapixel of the Trump Inauguration and concentrate on just the area around the U.S. Grant Memorial and an equivalent area on the other side of the reflecting pool. Compare to the gigapixel of Obama's 2009 inauguration. Note how the Grant Memorial is basically hidden from view during the Obama Inauguration? The area 50 feet either of the reflecting pool holds thousands more in 2009 than in 2017 - yet this is an area that is pretty much "equal" in the side-by-side MSM photos.

How do *you* characterize the MSM side-by-side photos? I said "less than half" and I believe this is an accurate depiction.

By Kevin O'Neill (not verified) on 13 Feb 2017 #permalink

Kevin ONeill my reference to half full was in response to Brainstorms who I think is talking about the side-by-side photo.

Yes, Obama does look more packed. I wasn't aware there was a gigapixel of his inauguration.
I thought this was something new that CNN produced. I don't know where the Grant Memorial is. The horse is in view in both gigapixels, and I can't make it out in the side-by-side.
The side by side is obviously much less than half, maybe 20%. Side-by-side gigapixels may be half as well.

OK, I think I see your point about Grant, they are occupying the whole area, while it is empty in the Trump photo.

"MikeN -Comparison of the paved areas actually gives an **overestimation ** of the comparative size of the crowds. "


If the place were crowded, you'd see only the heads and shoulders of people "occupying" the view. But if the crowd is thin, you can see the body and legs too, making each person "occupy" a large area in the field of view.

The problem is that in his claims about the crowd size the loofah-faced shit-gibbon plainly shows he is a fantasist, and his obesession over the "meaningless" tiny size of his crowd, among other things, shows the tiny-handed-one is excessively self-obsessed and vain.

The resignation of Flynn is a blow to the Trump administration.

He apparently forgot his conversation with the Russians (or lied about it) to the Vice-President.

That is not a good character trait for a political appointee.

Especially when telling the truth is so easy.

He could have said, yes we spoke about the sanctions - but I made no promises - the call was merely introductory. Or words to that effect.

Calls like this are fairly routine for incoming administration officials.

It wouldn't have been a big deal at all - but for making the VP look like a liar.

The lesson - never lie to your boss.

Just fess up and this tiny error would have been no big deal.

The dipstick could have just waited a few weeks.

But here's something for you to explain away. Orangina insisted that nobody knew who his picks were. But Putin already knew flynn was one of them, and which role he'd play.

The russians knew what was going to happen, according to the loofah-faced shit gibbon, more than anyone in the USA did!

Word coming out is that Pence was behind pushing Flynn out the door. It was needs to be pointed out that Trump fired the person who told him Flynn had done this but didn't think it was important enough to fire Flynn.

The person he fired was fired because she wouldn't do her job. She was leaving soon anyways, but got some attention for herself and boosted her job prospects among liberals on the way out.

The leak to the newspapers is ridiculous. Sure they probably knew it, but confirming that the government is listening in on the Russian Ambassador's phone calls, is giving up that info worth the damage to Donald Trump's political standing.

So can anyone tell me what it is the Russians would blackmail him for? As near as I can tell, it is that they would reveal that Flynn lied about Flynn's talk with the Russians.

Yeah, right. The ship of state is unlike any other: it's the only one to leak from the top.

Tiny Tweet Hands can't stop leaking.

After the revelations of "GoldenGate", it seems to be a think for him...

"So can anyone tell me what it is the Russians would blackmail him for? "

Uh, the problem is he'd broken the law and was working as a russian agent, dumbass. What the hell do you think foreign agents do?

Flynn was working for the russians, not for the US government. Or at the very least, working for two masters, only one of which was *supposed* to be his boss.

The person he fired was fired because she wouldn’t do her job.

I thought it was that she pointed out - apparently correctly - that what Trump was doing was unconstitutional.

"The leak to the newspapers is ridiculous."

Bah. It probably was someone at Maralaga when trump was cosying up to paying customers of the business he's supposed to have no frigging dealing with as president who just use the phone cam and flash to take a pic of some information and put it on their facebook account...

It's not like there was the dude carrying around the codes was photographed and named because he had to go to see the president who decided they didn't want to stay at the whitehouse, where there's some fucking SECURITY to hold off random people seeing the classified stuff being talked about and handed over.

FFS, this would be like Hilary posting her stuff directly to WikiLeaks instead of a private server.

Jail the orange twat!

The leak to the newspapers is ridiculous. Sure they probably knew it, but confirming that the government is listening in on the Russian Ambassador’s phone calls, is giving up that info worth the damage to Donald Trump’s political standing.

MikeN, be serious. Of course the Russians know the Ambassador is tapped. They know it for a fact. So *nothing whatsoever* has been 'given up'. But the damage done to Trump is huge, IMO. And it's far from over yet.

MikeN - "The person he fired was fired because she wouldn’t do her job."

Last I checked she did her job well. Upholding the constitution and providing accurate legal advice being top of the list.

By Kevin O'Neill (not verified) on 14 Feb 2017 #permalink

She was fired because she did her job.

By Brainstorms (not verified) on 14 Feb 2017 #permalink

You have to wonder how much Trump supports hate reality when they say things like she was fired for not doing her job. Dishonesty of that level is impressive, in a very sad way.

It's also worth remembering that President Trump is still surrounded by incredibly vile people (Pence, Bannon, etc.) --fundamentalist Christian loons and white nationalists. Not a good time to be anything other than a rich white male.

I get that they find it a mirthful challenge to see how much dishonesty they can sell to the public and still get away with it. It's a fun game for them...

By Brainstorms (not verified) on 14 Feb 2017 #permalink

Far and away, if you're a dedicated, fervent anti-Christ agent in society, the best way to cloak yourself in an acceptable sheep's skin and fool most of the people most of the time is to vociferously proclaim yourself to be a "fundamental christian".

"I'm a fundamentalist christian" translates to English as "you'd better literally burn me at the stake if you care to save your skin".

By Brainstorms (not verified) on 14 Feb 2017 #permalink

Brainstorms, if the source is wiretapping, that's fine. I assumed it was some other type of surveillance.

And we all know how truthful your polls are right? Just like all the polls that had Hillary winning by historic numbers!! If you liberals would just pull your head out of your ass and stop believing the blatant lies and disinformation CNN and MSNBC are vomiting on a daily basis, think for yourselves for once maybe you can actually become a decent member of society, and not the self absorbed hate filled social justice warriors normal hardworking people have come to loathe!!

They were pretty damn accurate, dav.

The polls predicted a Hilary win of 53%, and that is with an error of 3%. And she won the popular vote by, oddly enough, nearly 2%.

But we know how numerically illiterate trump supporters and the rightwingers in general are.

Something you didn't learn in 2nd grade is just too difficult for you to comprehend, isn't it, dearie.

I thought Trump's speech last night was surprising Presidential.

He did well.

Better than I thought he was going to do.

I wish him well, and hope he gets everything he wants done, done - and before the midterms in 2018.

I thought Trump’s speech last night was surprising Presidential.

He did well.

WTF? Alt-reality. Please let this just be trolling.

Real reality.

It was script written. Additionally he claims to have stopped TPP, a progressive ideal, a trillion dollars in infrastructure building (which when Obama wanted to increase spending by a few hundred million dollars they screamed holy murder and blocked it... so this is another leftist idea).

So his best bits were left and populist.

But he's not going to manage many of those because the party needs the money...