A majority of Republicans (68.7%) surveyed in Trump Country (Florida, Wisconsin, Ohio and Pennsylvania) think the president exaggerates or intentionally lies — but they don't care.
It's a sign of Trump's durability with his base, and an intriguing finding of a research project (3,491 likely midterm voters, interviewed by interactive robocall) by the Firehouse Strategies guys — GOP consultants Terry Sullivan, Alex Conant and Will Holley — and the big-data firm 0ptimus.
The firms gave Axios AM readers a first look at their results (full memo here):
- "[E]ven more voters ... think ... Republican members of Congress [exaggerate or lie]. ... Yes, voters think Trump is dishonest, but he's not worse than other politicians."
- "[M]ost Republican and independent voters say they won't punish Republicans in 2018 for failing to deliver."
- "If Republican lawmakers face difficulties in midterm elections, it likely won't be for failing to pass big legislation."
- "Nobody feels pressure from their base to compromise."