Oct 4, 2020 - Politics & Policy

SurveyMonkey poll: Trump faces little GOP fallout over COVID disclosure

President Trump speaks from Walter Reed hospital

Screenshot from Twitter video Trump posted from Walter Reed hospital Saturday night

Just 1 in 10 Republicans says President Trump is handling his own COVID-19 diagnosis irresponsibly, according to a SurveyMonkey snap poll for Axios after he disclosed testing positive.

Why it matters: If these findings hold, it suggests that as unsettling a moment as this is — and for all the questions it's raised about Trump's commitment to public safety or the well-being of supporters and staff — he may not pay a price inside his own party with a month left in the election.

  • Joe Biden's national lead over Trump was holding steady at 52%-44% in SurveyMonkey's latest daily tracking poll.
  • Trump's job approval remained underwater but unchanged, at 44%.

Democrats and independents want the remaining debates and campaign events for both candidates to go virtual or be scrapped altogether, while most Republicans want them to go ahead in person.

What they're saying: "The reality we're in is, how locked in both sides are," said SurveyMonkey chief research officer Jon Cohen.

  • "There's not an indication anything's changed yet," he said. While there could be a shift as Americans learn more about the facts, he said the data suggests that "there's not a lot of openness to incorporating facts on the ground."

By the numbers: 73% of Democrats and 58% of independents say Trump handled his diagnosis irresponsibly, while 88% of Republicans say he acted responsibly, in the national survey of 1,448 U.S. adults, conducted Oct. 2-3.

Between the lines: Even after the president had symptoms severe enough to be admitted to Walter Reed Medical Center for several days, to be medicated with special drugs and monitored by a team of doctors, 63% of Republicans said they wanted presidential campaign events to continue in person.

  • Just 16% of Democrats agreed — the rest said Biden and Trump campaign events should be virtual (70%) or canceled (12%).
  • Most independents also want events to be virtual (57%) or canceled (18%).
  • A majority of Republicans also want the next presidential debate, which had been set for Oct. 15, to go forward and to take place in person, while Democrats disagree; 55% of Democrats say it should become a virtual event and one-fourth say it should just be canceled.

Methodology: This SurveyMonkey online poll was conducted October 2-3 among a national sample of 1,448 adults in the U.S.

  • Respondents for this survey were selected from the more than 2 million people who take surveys on the SurveyMonkey platform each day.
  • The modeled error estimate for this survey is ±3.5 percentage points. Data have been weighted for age, race, sex, education and geography using the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey to reflect the demographic composition of the United States age 18 and over.
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