- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Approval ratings of the Republican Party have taken a hit since the November election, and the greatest drop in opinion has occurred among Republicans themselves, according to a Gallup poll released Wednesday.

Following the election, the GOP enjoyed a 90% favorability among Republicans, according to a previous November poll. That approval has now dropped to 78%, or a drop of a dozen percentage points.

An even third of independents gave the Republican Party a thumbs-up at election time; that finding has only dropped by a single percentage point to 32%. Among Democrats, 9% approved three months ago; the finding actually rose by 1 percentage point in the current poll.

“With much of the decline in Republican Party favorability coming from Republicans themselves, the GOP faces a crossroads, as it decides whether to continue to be loyal to Trump, his political style and his favored policy positions or break with him. Currently, 60% of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents say they want Trump to continue to lead the party, while 38% would prefer a new leader,” wrote Gallup analyst Jeffrey M. Jones.

“History has shown that changes in party images can be temporary and subject to major political events,” he said.

“With Trump’s impeachment trial underway, it is notable that past impeachment efforts have tended to harm the image of the party pursuing the changes — Republicans in 1998 and Democrats in 2020. One difference between the current impeachment effort and the two most recent ones, though, is that more Americans want to see Trump convicted than acquitted. In 1998 and 2020, Americans opposed convicting the president,” Mr. Jones said.

• Jennifer Harper can be reached at jharper@washingtontimes.com.

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