Gallup: Historically, Incumbent With 50% or More Job Approval Gets Reelected -- Trump Now 49%

By Michael W. Chapman | May 29, 2020 | 3:51pm EDT
(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

(CNSNews) -- A new report from Gallup shows that, historically, an incumbent president with a 50% or higher job approval rating going into a November election, will most likely get reelected. President Trump's current job approval rating is at 49% among American adults.

One exception to Gallup's general rule was President George W. Bush, who had a 48% job approval rating going into the November 2004 presidential election, which he won.

When Barack Obama ran for reelection in 2012, he enjoyed a 52% job approval rating. Ronald Reagan had a 58% approval rank going into his 1984 reelection. 


"George W. Bush is the only recent president who had an approval rating above 40% but lower than 50% at the time of the election -- the same range where Trump is now," said Gallup.  "Bush won a second term in 2004 when his approval rating was 48% in the final Gallup poll taken before the election."

"Trump, like his two immediate predecessors, has approval ratings in the mid-to-upper 40% range, which indicates his reelection is uncertain," said Gallup.  "Thus, even a modest increase or decrease in his approval ratings significantly alter his odds of winning a second term."

(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

"Particularly if Trump's approval rating is right around 50%, his fate may lie in voter turnout," said the polling firm. "Like George W. Bush, Trump could benefit if his supporters vote at higher rates than his opponents."

Gallup further reported, "like in Trump's own 2016 victory when he won the presidency despite losing the popular vote, he would benefit if he maintains adequate support in the right mix of swing states. To that end, his job approval rating in key states like Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Michigan may give additional insight into whether he can win a second term."

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