Even as cable news networks debate reports of the existence of a recording of President Donald Trump using a racial slur, a new poll from Rasmussen Reports says that the president’s approval rating among African-Americans is at 36 percent, nearly double his support at this time last year.
“Today’s @realDonaldTrump approval ratings among black voters: 36%,” Rasmussen said in a tweet. “This day last year: 19%.”
That is a staggeringly high number for a man who only won 8 percent of the African-American vote in 2016.
It is even more unexpected given the president’s rocky history on matters related to race, including his current nasty feud with former White House aide Omarosa Manigault Newman, who has alleged Trump said “n word” on the set of the reality-TV show “The Apprentice.”
Conservatives celebrated the poll as a sign of trouble for Democrats in upcoming elections.
Charlie Kirk, the founder of the conservative campus group Turning Point USA, cited the poll as evidence that Trump “is breaking the Democrat party as we know it.”
“Trump’s Black Approval is at 36%,” Kirk tweeted. “If I was a Democrat I would be terrified. And it’s only going to get worse for them.”
A post on Fox News host Sean Hannity’s blog cheered the apparent increase in support, which defies the “non-stop media attacks.”
“The stunning data spells disaster for Democrats just months away from the 2018 midterm election, with the party’s base beginning to fracture as the economy roars to life under President Trump and the GOP-controlled Congress,” the post says.
Trump frequently cites Rasmussen polls because they consistently show him with a higher approval rating than other polling organizations. For example, the Real Clear Politics averagecurrently has Trump at 43 percent approval. But today’s tracking poll from Rasmussen has the president at 49 percent. And while Trump has never topped 46 percent on the RCP average, Rasmussen has shown Trump with approval ratings as high as 59 percent.
But other polls have also shown an increase in support for Trump among African-Americans – albeit a more modest increase than Rasmussen found.
An NAACP poll released on Aug. 7 found that Trump’s approval rating was at 21 percent. And a survey conducted by the Pew Research Center in June found Trump’s approval rating among blacks at 14 percent.
Although a vast majority of African-Americans still disapprove of Trump’s job as president, those numbers represent an improvement from his share of the vote in 2016. No Republican presidential candidate has done better than 12 percent among blacks since Bob Dole in 1996, according to Cornell University’s Roper Center.
Trump proudly and frequently cites the current low unemployment figures among African-Americans as a reason voters from that demographic should support him. On Friday, Trump cited those numbers in a tweet in which he also said he was “honored” to have the support of musician Kanye West.
In May, Trump boasted to a crowd at a National Rifle Association convention that West’s endorsement had doubled his percentage of African-American supporters after a Reuters pollshowed it went from 11 to 22 percent in one week.
“Kanye West must have some power because you probably have saw I doubled my African-American poll numbers,” Trump said. “Thank you, Kanye!”