As Donald Trump prepares to take the presidential oath on Jan. 20, less than half of Americans are confident in his ability to handle an international crisis (46%), to use military force wisely (47%) or to prevent major scandals in his administration (44%). At least seven in 10 Americans were confident in Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton in these areas before they took office.So why are so many of us spending so much time flagellating ourselves for our failure to understand the Trump voter? Why are we describing Trump voters as the quintessential Americans, the ones Democrats and the "liberal media" shun at their peril? Trump is widely disliked. Even presidential election winners like Bill Clinton in 1992 and George W. Bush in 2000 who failed to win outright popular-vote majorities were regarded positively by voters in the immediate aftermath of tough campaigns. The country rallied around them. The country isn't rallying around Trump. So why not portray him as wrong-footed from the start, a man who'll struggle to win popular consent for his actions and his policies?
... The results for Trump are based on a Dec. 7-11 Gallup poll. They are consistent with prior Gallup polling showing Trump having a much lower favorable rating than prior presidents-elect and a much lower approval rating for how he has handled his presidential transition.
That's how the political world would be talking about Hillary Clinton right now if she'd won -- even if, unlike Trump, she'd won both the popular and the electoral vote. We'd be told that she has to renege on many of her promises, reach out to her enemies, maybe even give Trump himself a Cabinet position. So why aren't we hearing anything like that about Trump now?