Consumers of mainstream media have been treated to a steady diet of Trump voters expressing doubts, frustrations and regrets over the myriad 'betrayals' of his early presidency. But a fresh national survey from the Washington Post and ABC News demonstrates that these cherry-picked examples represent just two percent of Trump's 2016 backers. With near unanimity, virtually every American who pulled the lever for Trump in November does not regret the decision. Indeed, the poll shows that in spite of all of the controversy, mass demonstrations, media hostility and popular culture ridicule, if the same pool of voters were to do it all over again today, Donald Trump would once again defeat Hillary Clinton:
As the ABC News write-up states, the survey found that respondents backed Clinton over Trump in the fall by a three-point margin, which is within one point of the final national margin. But because almost none of Trump's supporters would abandon him, while fully 15 percent of Clinton's say they'd ditch her, Trump would score a popular vote victory in a re-do election. Might this outcome mean that the Left will finally stop whinging about the largely-irrelevant metric to which they've clung for months? Don't hold your breath; scapegoats and excuses abound. In addition to their fixation with Russia's interference in the 2016 election (which is a real and serious issue that is rightfully being scrutinized by multiple investigations, but the extent of which has been exaggerated and hyped thus far), many liberals have returned to blaming FBI Director James Comey for Hillary's loss. A major part of their case is pointing out that his letter to Congress informing members of the Bureau's criminal investigation into Sec. Clinton's gross mishandling of classified materials -- about which she lied repeatedly -- dented her poll numbers:
Clinton experienced a sharp, 3-point drop in her polls after the Comey letter came out. Then on 11/8, she lost FL, WI, PA & MI by <=1 point.— Nate Silver (@NateSilver538) April 22, 2017
Well, yes. When a presidential candidate is under active FBI investigation, having made multiple public assertions since proven to be falsehoods, voters tend not to react well. What we've also now learned is that part of the reason that Comey sent that letter in the first place was that he suspected President Obama's Attorney General, Loretta Lynch, was not acting impartially (cough). We've also learned that the Obama Justice Department distorted the nature of the Clinton investigation from the get-go in order to protect her:
Obama Justice Department Misled About Criminal Nature of Clinton Email Investigation | The Weekly Standard https://t.co/QDLVBiwV3s— Mark Hemingway (@Heminator) April 22, 2017
Responding to questions from The Times, the Justice Department confirmed that it had received a criminal referral — the first step toward a criminal investigation — over Mrs. Clinton's handling of classified information. But the next morning, the department revised its statement. "The department has received a referral related to the potential compromise of classified information," the new statement read. "It is not a criminal referral." At the F.B.I., this was a distinction without a difference: Despite what officials said in public, agents had been alerted to mishandled classified information and in response, records show, had opened a full criminal investigation. The Justice Department knew a criminal investigation was underway..Some at the F.B.I. suspected that Democratic appointees were playing semantic games to help Mrs. Clinton, who immediately seized on the statement to play down the issue. "It is not a criminal investigation," she said, incorrectly. "It is a security review."
Comey's gravest error in this process was not referring a recommendation for criminal charges against Mrs. Clinton. The statute was clear, and bonus evidence of intent was abundantly available. Democrats knowingly nominated a corrupt shameless liar who would yet again lose to Donald Trump if an election were called today. The resulting blame rests with them for choosing such a widely disliked and distrusted candidate who ran an astoundingly lousy campaign -- not the FBI for doing its job, nor the media for offering heavy coverage of the scandal. Hillary's awfulness is thrown in to even starker relief by the fact that in the very same just-released WaPo/ABC poll, Trump's approval numbers are sucking wind. A handful of bright spots notwithstanding, he's sitting at (42/53) on job performance, (41/56) on judgment, (38/59) on temperament, (38/58) on trustworthiness, and (38/58) on being in touch with ordinary Americans. This is a man who, according to the same survey, would still win the presidency against his 2016 opponent. Perhaps part of the reason why is that the Democratic Party is in the toilet, too. Their "in touch with the concerns of most people" rating is actually worse than Trump's or the GOP's (bad) scores on the question:
I'll leave you with a few words of warning for GOP-leaning voters. Democrats' unpopularity does not mean that they're incapable of making large gains in 2018. Recall that Republicans scored terribly on numerous public opinion metrics throughout the Obama presidency, yet Americans' hunger for a counterweight to Obama's agenda and the conservative base's strong motivation to turn out led to two massive midterm waves. And then there's this:
Democrats may be 0-for-6 on pick-up opportunities so far -- and that isn't nothing -- but some historical markers for a very bad 2018 for Republicans are in the mix. And don't simply count on the conventional wisdom that Democrats always underperform in non-presidential year elections to bail out the GOP. That has some real basis in fact, and both 2010 and 2014 reinforced that perception, but national moods and base intensity matter greatly. Don't believe me? Look no further than 2006. In short, neither party should feel satisfied or confident about their standing with the American people right now. Many, many voters are deeply dissatisfied with everyone.