GOP pollster says Trump's 'persona' hurts him in polling

GOP pollster Ed Goeas argued in an interview that aired Wednesday that President TrumpDonald TrumpMeghan McCain: Democrats 'should give a little credit' to Trump for COVID-19 vaccine Trump testing czar warns lockdowns may be on table if people don't get vaccinated Overnight Health Care: CDC details Massachusetts outbreak that sparked mask update | White House says national vaccine mandate 'not under consideration at this time' MORE's policies tend to help his approval rating, while his public "persona" appears to hurt him in various polls.

"What you see with his job approval is when he focuses on policy, his approval rating goes up. ... When he focuses on his persona and how he's talking about the policy, his approval level goes down," Goeas, president and CEO of the Tarrance Group, told Hill.TV's Jamal Simmons on "What America's Thinking." 

"There is a large chunk of voters who like his policies, but don't like his persona," he said. "So the ebb and flow on the job approval is not surprising."

The Republican pollster's comments came in a segment focused on Trump's decision last week to declare a national emergency at the border in order to circumvent Congress and secure funding he's demanded for a border barrier.

Trump has sought to shore up his support among his base with the emergency declaration, which is part of an effort to fulfill his campaign promise to build a border wall. He has also slammed Democratic lawmakers for what he calls their support of open borders.

Hill-HarrisX survey released on Wednesday found that 59 percent of registered voters oppose his emergency declaration at the border.

Trump's overall approval rating stands at 44.1 percent, according to the RealClearPolitics polling index, with 52.8 percent of Americans saying they disapprove of his job in office.

— Julia Manchester