Poll: Michigan residents favor governor's COVID-19 handling over Trump's

Michigan residents prefer how Gov. Gretchen WhitmerGretchen WhitmerDetroit police chief planning GOP gubernatorial run against Whitmer More than half of Michigan adults have had at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose Michigan Senate votes to exempt high school graduations from crowd restrictions MORE (D) has handled the coronavirus outbreak over President TrumpDonald TrumpSanders: Reinstating SALT deduction 'sends a terrible, terrible message' GOP braces for wild week with momentous vote One quick asylum fix: How Garland can help domestic violence survivors MORE’s response to the pandemic, according to a statewide poll released Monday.

The Detroit Regional Chamber’s survey found that 57 percent of residents approved of Whitmer’s handling of the pandemic, while 44 percent said the same about Trump. Disapproval of the governor's response stood at 37 percent, compared with 50 percent for the president's.

Approval for both political leaders was split along party lines. For Whitmer, 89 percent of Democrats backed her handling of the virus, compared with 22 percent of Republicans supporting her. Among independent voters, 56 percent approved of the governor’s efforts during the crisis.


Meanwhile, 88 percent of GOP respondents approved of Trump’s management of the outbreak, compared to 6 percent of Democrats who approved. Support for the president among independents was 40 percent.

More women than men approved of Whitmer’s management of the crisis, 64 percent to 49 percent. For the president, it was flipped — 39 percent support from women and 49 percent from men.

Small groups of protesters have held rallies to protest Whitmer extending a stay-at-home order, calling the move too aggressive. The governor has defended her order, citing Michigan having the third-highest coronavirus death count in the country.

Trump has encouraged protesters, tweeting “LIBERATE MICHIGAN!” last week. The president also slammed some governors, arguing they have “gone too far” with their stay-at-home orders, declining to mention specifics but calling out Whitmer and Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D).

Michigan has more than 31,000 confirmed coronavirus cases, leading to more than 2,300 deaths. The state ranks sixth in the number of cases and third in the number of deaths, behind New York and New Jersey.

The Detroit Regional Chamber’s poll surveyed 600 residents from April 15 to 16. The margin of error is plus or minus 4 percentage points.