Reuters/Ipsos Core Political: Presidential Approval Tracker (07/15/2020)

Republicans are growing increasingly unhappy about the direction of the country; Biden holds lead over Trump

The author(s)

  • Chris Jackson Senior Vice President, US, Public Affairs
  • Annaleise Azevedo Lohr Director, US, Public Affairs
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Washington, DC, July 15, 2020 –  This week’s Reuters/Ipsos Core Political shows Americans remain disappointed in the direction of the country, and the continued low numbers are fueled by increasing Republican frustration. Americans remain split on the most important issue facing the country. President Trump’s overall approval rating remains stable. Perceptions of his handling of coronavirus remain at the lowest levels since tracking began. Former Vice President Joe Biden continues to lead over President Trump in the general election head-to-head.

American dissatisfaction with the direction of the country remains at its all-time high during the Trump administration (67% say the country is on the wrong track).

  • Republican registered voters’ dissatisfaction remains at its highest levels, with 47% reporting the country is on the wrong track and only 41% say the country is headed in the right direction.
  • Democratic registered voters remain dissatisfied with the direction of the country, with 88% reporting America is off on the wrong track.
  • Two-thirds of independent registered voters also say the country is headed in the wrong direction (68%).

Right Direction/ Wrong Track


Americans continue to differ on their perceptions of the main issue facing the country.

  • About a quarter of Americans say the economy and jobs are the most important problems (26%), while 21% report that healthcare is the biggest issue. Approximately 16% of Americans say “other issues” are the main problem.
  • Democratic registered voters are more likely to say healthcare is the biggest problem (29%) than the economy and jobs (23%). About 18% of Democratic registered voters say the other issues are the main problem.
  • One-third of Republican registered voters say the economy and jobs are the biggest problems (32%), compared to just 14% who say healthcare is the main issue. About 15% say other issues are the most important problem.

Important Problem


About two in five Americans approve of President Trump’s overall job performance (40%), and just 37% approve of his handling of coronavirus.

  • The president’s base continues to be supportive of him, with 83% of Republican registered voters reporting they approve of how Trump is doing his job.
  • Democratic registered voters do not approve of Trump, 90% report they disapprove, and nearly 4 in 5 say they strongly disapprove (79%).
  • Approximately one-third of independent voters approve how Trump is handling the presidency (31%).

Trump Approval

When asked who they would vote for if the presidential election were held today, nearly half of registered voters say former Vice President Joe Biden (47%) compared to 37% who say President Trump.

  • Both candidates receive strong support from their respective parties: 82% of Republican registered voters say they would vote for Trump, and 85% of Democratic registered voters say they would vote for Biden.
  • Independent registered voters are split, with 28% saying they would vote for Trump and 32% saying they would vote for Biden. About two in five say they would vote for another candidate (18%) or they are not sure (20%).


About the Study

These are some of the findings of an Ipsos poll conducted between July 13-14, 2020 on behalf of Thomson Reuters. For this survey, a sample of 1,115 Americans age 18+ from the continental U.S., Alaska, and Hawaii were interviewed online in English. The sample includes 961 registered voters, 441 Democratic registered voters, 385 Republican registered voters and 108 independent registered voters. Weighting was then employed to balance demographics to ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the adult population according to Census data and to provide results int ended to approximate the sample universe. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll is accurate to within ± 3.3 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Americans been polled. The credibility interval will be wider among subsets of the population. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error. The poll also has a credibility interval of ± 3.6 percentage points for all registered voters, ± 5.3 percentage points for Democratic registered voters, ± 5.7 percentage points for Republican registered voters, and ± 10.8 percentage points for independent registered voters. 

For more information on this news release, please contact:

Chris Jackson
Vice President, US
Public Affairs
+1 202 420-2025
[email protected]

Kate Silverstein
Media Relations, US
Public Affairs
+1 718 755-8829
[email protected]

About Ipsos

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Our passionately curious research professionals, analysts and scientists have built unique multi-specialist capabilities that provide true understanding and powerful insights into the actions, opinions and motivations of citizens, consumers, patients, customers or employees. We serve more than 5,000 clients across the world with 75 business solutions.

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The author(s)

  • Chris Jackson Senior Vice President, US, Public Affairs
  • Annaleise Azevedo Lohr Director, US, Public Affairs