A majority of voters oppose President Donald Trump’s decision to declare a national emergency along the U.S.-Mexico border for the purpose of letting his administration shift money to build the wall Congress refused to fund, according to a new POLITICO/Morning Consult poll.
Fewer than four in 10 voters, 39 percent, support Trump’s declaration, the poll shows — fewer than the 51 percent who oppose it. In fact, the percentage of poll respondents who “strongly oppose” Trump’s decision, 41 percent, is greater than the combined share of those who “strongly support” (26 percent) or “somewhat support” (13 percent) the national emergency declaration.
Most Republicans back Trump’s decision, however: 77 percent support the emergency declaration, compared with 18 percent who oppose it. But majorities of Democrats (81 percent) and independents (52 percent) oppose the president’s invoking the emergency provision.
Tyler Sinclair, Morning Consult’s vice president, said the poll numbers showed that GOP voters were strongly “in the president’s corner” on the issue.
“Over three-fourths of Republicans back President Trump’s decision to declare a national emergency at the U.S.-Mexico border, and 75 percent say it wasn’t an abuse of power,” Sinclair said.
The poll was conducted Feb. 15-19, beginning after Trump announced last Friday that he would use the emergency declaration and other executive actions to build a wall along the nation’s southern border, even after signing a government funding bill passed by Congress earlier in the week that largely spurned the administration’s calls for more than $5 billion for the border wall.
Despite opposition to the emergency declaration, voters continue to be split over the border wall itself: 45 percent support it and 47 percent oppose it. But half, 50 percent, say Trump’s emergency declaration to build the wall is “an abuse of power,” the poll shows, while only 37 percent say it isn’t.
The POLITICO/Morning Consult poll is the second national survey to be released since Trump announced his decision to invoke his national emergency powers to build the wall. The other, conducted by Marist College for NPR and “PBS Newshour,” found support for Trump on the issue at a similar level: 37 percent among registered voters. But more voters, 60 percent, disapprove of Trump’s decision. And 58 percent say he is “misusing his presidential power,” according to the poll.
Trump’s overall approval rating in the new POLITICO/Morning Consult poll ticked down 3 points lower than last week. Now, 42 percent of voters approve of the job Trump is doing as president, while 53 percent disapprove.
The POLITICO/Morning Consult poll surveyed 1,914 registered voters and has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.
Morning Consult is a nonpartisan media and technology company that provides data-driven research and insights on politics, policy and business strategy.
Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine