Ex-GOP strategist says Republicans could ditch Trump like ‘rats fleeing a sinking ship’ as his support craters in polls – The Sun
A FORMER GOP strategist thinks Republicans might scurry away from President Donald Trump like “rats fleeing a sinking ship” as the November election nears.
Steve Schmidt said on MSNBC on Monday that conservatives in Congress might lose faith in sticking with Trump as his poll numbers drop.
“Well, the way that the campaigns are looking at this now is they’re looking at the average of all of the polls,” Schmidt said.
“So you’re looking at an eight percent, nine percent lead for [Joe] Biden by the average, but you’re looking at decimation inside Trump’s internal numbers on all of the questions of leadership, on decency, on being up to and fit for the job of being president.”
He said of Trump: “He’s just lost the confidence of the American people during this season of ineptitude and incompetence in his performance and you see that throughout the poll.”
Schmidt explained that Trump’s dismal polling and poor approval rating could hurt Senate Republicans who are seeking re-election in November.
“Now, when you look at the state polls and you look at the trajectory of some of the Senate races, if you’re a Republican, you’re starting to tremble,” Schmidt said.
“These numbers are very, very ominous at this hour.”
Notably, Republican Sen Mitt Romney of Utah, who's clashed with Trump, was the sole member of the GOP who voted for the president's impeachment earlier this year.
And on Sunday, Romney marched with Black Lives Matter protesters — and said he and Republican colleagues have been working on police reform legislation.
Trump tweeted of Romney's solidarity: "Tremendous sincerity, what a guy. Hard to believe, with this kind of political talent, his numbers would 'tank' so badly in Utah!"
According to estimates from FiveThirtyEight, Trump’s approval rating has fallen to negative 12.7 percent — down from negative 6.7 percent in April — among registered or likely voters.
As noted by The New York Times, a new wave of polls show Biden, who officially sealed the Democratic nomination on Friday, leading Trump.
Voters are thinking about Trump’s leadership in recent months, during which Americans have been affected by the coronavirus pandemic and a hard-hit economy, and the nationwide protests in the wake of George Floyd’s death.
Schmidt noted: “You could see in the coming months more and more of these Republicans starting to jump off the ship like fleeing rats.”
“But, you know, at the end they’ve lashed their masts to the SS Trump, and the SS Trump is floundering in heavy seas — that’s what the poll number says.”
Per the Times, Biden leads Trump by roughly 10 percentage points among registered voters.
A poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research released in May shows that 41 percent of Americans approve of the president’s job performance, while 58 percent disapprove.
Those numbers are consistent with voters’ opinions of Trump during the pandemic and during his time in office.
Biden’s campaign believes Trump’s uneven handling of the coronavirus crisis will ultimately cost him his job during the presidential election.
“The scale of the loss is staggering and it’s infuriating,” Biden said last month.
“But more than that, it’s heartbreaking to think how much fear, how much loss, how much agony could have been avoided if the president hadn’t wasted so much time and taken responsibility.”
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