A year after election, even fewer satisfied with state of U.S.
November 6, 2017
• Just one in five satisfied with direction of the U.S.
• But Americans are more confident in the economy
Since Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton in electoral college votes in the 2016 presidential election one year ago, some key indicators are worse and some are better, according to a study by the polling firm Gallup Inc.
Americans' confidence in the economy has improved, as has Mr. Trump's favorable rating in Gallup polling.
At the same time, Americans' satisfaction with the direction of the country has worsened -- and, with Mr. Trump still viewed more negatively than positively, the percentage of U.S. adults identifying as Republican or "leaning" Republican has declined slightly. There has been no change in Democratic Party identification or leaning.
These results are based on a comparison of recent Gallup data on key indicators with the same indicators in October 2016.
In October 2016, about a month before Mr. Trump won the needed number of electoral votes, 28 percent of Americans were satisfied with the way things were going in the U.S. In the most recent update, conducted last month, 21 percent said they are satisfied, Gallup says.
There have been some short-lived increases in satisfaction in the past year, with a few readings above 30 percent. These include a Democratic-led surge in satisfaction in an early November 2016 poll, perhaps on the expectation Mrs. Clinton would win, and a Republican-led increase earlier this year after Mr. Trump's inauguration, Gallup says.
The most recent satisfaction rating is from a survey taken in the days after the Las Vegas mass shooting, which might have depressed satisfaction levels. However, satisfaction was at 25 percent in Gallup's September update, also lower than a year ago.
Apart from a brief period in late 2014 and early 2015, Americans' evaluations of the U.S. economy (both present and future) had been more negative than positive since the 2007-2009 recession. But Gallup's Economic Confidence Index shifted from a negative to a positive score as soon as Mr. Trump was elected, mostly because Republicans' economic outlook improved.
The index -- which averaged -11 in October 2016, the last full month before Mr. Trump won -- peaked in January at +11. Confidence has eased slightly in the ensuing months, but the index has remained positive each month, including a score of +3 in the October monthly reading.
These results are based on monthly averages from Gallup Daily tracking conducted in October 2016 and October 2017, except for satisfaction (October 2016 and October 2017 Gallup Poll Social Series surveys) and 2017 favorable rating (Nov. 1-2 Gallup Daily tracking). Gallup conducted telephone interviews with a random sample of approximately 15,000 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±1 percentage point at the 95 percent confidence level.
Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 70 percent cellphone respondents and 30 percent landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by time zone within region. Landline and cellular telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods.