Polling experts: Manafort will unlikely impact Trump’s approval from supporters

08/29/18

Polling experts Anna Yukhananov and Dan Cox said on Wednesday that the legal troubles surrounding President Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort will likely not affect his approval among his supporters. 

“We’ve seen a lot of scandals. [Michael] Cohen’s admission that Trump [knew about the payment] to Stormy Daniels and his support barely budged from that,” Yukhananov, executive editor at Morning Consult, told Hill.TV’s Joe Concha on “What America’s Thinking.”

“I don’t think that whatever he does with Manafort or Cohen, that his staunchest supporters are going to change their minds,” she continued. 
 
Cox, who is the research director at the Public Religion Research Institute Research, pointed to Trump’s approval ratings in the face of other scandals during his presidency. 
 
“If you look at his favorability, his approval rate over the last 18 months, two years, [it is] incredibly stable,” Cox told Concha. 
 
“We’ve seen major events, whether it’s Charlottesville, whether it’s stuff around immigration, the policy about refugees and Muslims, none of this has budged his approval, particularly around the 40 [percent] or so folks who are behind him. They still are behind him,” he said. 
 
Manafort was found guilty on eight charges of bank and tax fraud in a Virginia court last week, and faces a second upcoming trial in Washington, D.C. on charges including money laundering, conspiracy, failing to register as a foreign lobbyist and making false statements and misleading federal agents.
 
Despite Manafort’s verdict and Cohen’s admission last week, Trump’s approval rating has remained steady. 
 
An NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released on Sunday found that Trump’s approval rating dropped only two points after the news on Cohen and Manafort. 
 

— Julia Manchester

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