Nearly 6 in 10 Americans still think Donald Trump obstructed justice, according to a newly released AP-NORC poll. Despite Attorney General William Barr’s four-page cover up and Trump’s weeks-long “total exoneration” tour, fully 58 percent of the nation thinks Trump interfered with the Russia investigation, while 40 percent do not believe that.
Among Republicans, 10 percent more now say Trump is free of wrongdoing (65 this month vs. 55 percent last month) than before Barr issued his report; and 10 percent fewer Republicans say Trump did something unethical, 27 percent, down from 37 percent pre-report.
61 percent say the Justice Department has shared too little of Mueller’s report with the public, which suggests that Barr’s ploy mostly backfired among everyone but Republicans; 55 percent also say more of the Mueller report should be shared with Congress
53 percent want Congress to continue investigating (45 percent do not)
Trump’s job approval rating is 39 percent approve vs. 60 percent disapprove in the poll, nearly unchanged since before the report.
Harry Enten: “The problem for reporters is that even the best one’s opinions about the horserace are shaped by the environment surrounding them. This is especially the case early in primaries, because polling is far less predictive than it is in general elections. The people who surround national media reporters are right in Buttigieg’s wheelhouse.”
“Buttigieg does best among wealthier Democrats…. The national media tends to live in the wealthiest areas… Buttigieg also seems to be doing his best among white Democrats… The media can have a blind spot when a Democratic candidate has a ‘diversity’ problem.”
“In some ways, the media is dealing with the opposite problem that they did in the 2016 Republican primary. The national media were then dealing with a candidate, Donald Trump, who appealed to people who were very different than the people working in the media and who they lived among. Specifically, Trump’s support came from those without college degrees.”
A new Monmouth poll finds President Trump’s overall job rating at 40% approve and 54% disapprove.
“This result stands at the lower end of his typical job rating in Monmouth’s polling. Approval has tended to range from 39% to 44% and disapproval from 49% to 54% since he took office with a few exceptions – specifically, a more even 43% to 46% split in March 2017 and June 2018 and a low of 32% to 56% in December 2017. The president’s job rating with different partisan groups currently stands at 83% approve and 13% disapprove among Republicans, 40% to 49% among independents, and 7% to 92% among Democrats.”
Said pollster Patrick Murray: “The president’s job rating doesn’t see huge swings, so we tend to focus on small movements. The current reading comes at the end of tax return season and while official Washington eagerly awaits the Mueller report. Neither subject is particularly good for Trump.”
Sen. Amy Klobuchar agreed to become the second Democratic presidential candidate to hold a town hall meeting on Fox News Channel, and others are soon to follow, the AP reports. Meanwhile, Pete Buttigieg’s campaign confirmed that it is in talks with Fox too.
BuzzFeed News: “By the end of March, Warren’s campaign staff numbered about 164 people, according to payroll spending released this week in a quarterly Federal Election Commission disclosure. The 69-year-old candidate, who was the first major contender to jump in the race with a New Year’s Eve announcement, now has a team of more than 170 people and plans to bring on new hires every month in the second quarter of 2019, campaign officials confirmed.”
“As Warren and her advisers see it, it’s part of a larger strategy that diverts from past presidential campaigns that have prioritized spending on television ads. As voters change the way they consume information online, they say, Warren has focused on building a campaign operation in early-voting states like Iowa and New Hampshire, holding events (58 town halls in 14 states) where the emphasis is on answering questions (more than 250 from audiences), engaging with the press (105 one-on-one interviews and 44 media availabilities), and demonstrating substance on policy.”
Rep. Seth Moulton (D-MA) was spotted in his hometown of Marblehead, Massachusetts, taping a presidential announcement that’s expected within a week, Axios reports. Moulton’s key issues will be foreign policy, national security and defense.