World

Trump leaves White House with lowest approval rating of his presidency

WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump will leave the White House this week with the lowest approval rating of his presidency, with just 34 per cent of Americans supporting the job he has done, a Gallup poll showed on Monday.

Gallup noted that Mr Trump's average approval rating during his one-term presidency was 41 per cent, four points fewer than any of his predecessors since the survey began in the 1940s.

Mr Trump's job approval had dipped to 35 per cent in previous polls, most notably after he failed to condemn a violent gathering of white supremacists in Charlottesville, Virginia, in 2017.

The last poll of the Trump presidency was taken on the week of Jan 4-11, which covered the storming of the US Capitol building by Trump supporters trying to overturn the certification of the election won by Mr Joe Biden, whose victory Mr Trump has consistently denied.

His all-time high rating was in early last year, when he was facing an impeachment in the Senate on charges of trying to push Ukraine into helping him smear Mr Biden, and during the early stages of the pandemic when Americans believed he was responding well to the virus that has now killed 398,000 people in the country.

 

 

Meanwhile, Mr Trump began his final full day in the White House yesterday with a long list of possible pardons to dish out before snubbing Mr Biden's inauguration and leaving for Florida.

According to CNN and other US news outlets, Mr Trump has a list of about 100 people he will grant clemency to.

After what The New York Times reports has been an intense lobbying effort, these are expected to be a mix of white-collar criminals and people whose cases have been championed by criminal justice activists.

More controversial possible pardons that have been the subject of speculation for months would be for the likes of Edward Snowden, Julian Assange and Mr Trump's influential adviser Stephen Bannon.

If Mr Trump gave himself or his family a pardon - something currently not expected, according to latest US reports - that would likely harden anger among previously supportive Republicans in the Senate. - AFP

WORLD