This week started with Democrats in disarray, as the Iowa caucus winner is still unknown at the time of this writing. As Democrats tried making sense of their primary and the stock market rose, President Donald Trump took the stage to deliver one of his better State of the Union addresses. While Mr. Trump highlighted the booming economy, foreign policy successes, and reunited military families, Democrats grimaced, refused to clap and walked out. The Speaker of the House ended the evening dramatically with a petulant, childish gesture, tearing up her copy of the speech on national TV. The next day, the Senate acquitted the president of the impeachment charges pushed by the Democratic House.
That would seem to be a good week of the Trump presidency, and Gallup’s latest presidential job approval rating confirms it. Forty-nine percent of Americans approve of the job Mr. Trump is doing, according to Gallup, up four points from early January and the best rating of his presidency. Republicans and Independents boosted Mr. Trump’s rating, with 94% of Republicans (+6 points from earlier this month) and 42% of Independents (+5 points) saying they approve of the job he is doing. Mr. Trump’s rating is comparable to the ratings of the past five presidents at this point of their terms. President Barack Obama was at 45% at the end of Jan. 2012; President George W. Bush was at 49% at the end of Jan. 2004; President Bill Clinton was at 47% at that point in Jan. 1996 and President George H.W. Bush was at 47% at the end of Jan. 1992. President Ronald Reagan was in better shape at 55% at the end of January 1984.
Of course, it’s a long way before November and there will be many twists and turns along the way, but President Trump is having a better start to his political year than the Democrats are, especially after their disastrous Iowa Caucus and failed House impeachment effort.