Trump Gets Boost From Independents in WSJ/NBC News Poll

A new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll has found that President Donald Trump is seeing increased favorability among voters, though he remains unpopular: 43% of voters approved of his job performance, compared with 39% in January, according to a March survey. The increase was driven by the fact that white men have a rosier outlook on the president than they previously did, and college graduates appear less sour on him. Better news for Mr. Trump is that he appears to be winning over some independents.

In January, 61% of independents in our survey disapproved of the president’s job performance; this month, his disapproval is at 51%, with 45% of those surveyed approving.

The president’s political base, white men, is still with him: He enjoys the support of 59% of white men in our poll, with 39% disapproving, up from 52% approving and 46% disapproving in January. College graduates still widely disapprove of the president’s performance: just 38% approve of how he’s handling his job. But that’s higher than the 31% of college grads who approved in January.

Over the longterm, the president’s approval rating is holding somewhat steady compared to his predecessors. Over his first 15 months in the job, Mr. Trump job rating has fluctuated within a 6-point range. President Barack Obama’s rating swung 13 points, and Ronald Reagan’s approval range was as wide as 22 points.

Meanwhile, Democrats have regained a double-digit advantage over Republicans in the generic ballot, a part of our survey in which participants are asked which party should control Congress. As the 2018 midterm congressional campaign intensifies, the March poll found registered voters picked Democrats by a 50%-to-40% margin, the second time in three months the party has claimed a double-digit advantage, Janet Hook writes.

But, as we’ve written before, there is still cause for concern for Democrats. The March poll found that just 21% of voters have a positive image of House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, down 4 percentage points from a poll six months ago.

In Washington today, we’re following the fallout from Attorney General Jeff Sessions‘s decision to fire Andrew McCabe as deputy director of the FBI. Mr. Trump on Sunday intensified attacks on the special counsel’s probe into possible Russian election interference.

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