As Election Day approaches, the presidential race continues to tighten.
The latest good news for President Donald Trump comes in polling data this week that shows his approval rating ticked upward during the month of August, as reported by the Washington Examiner.
Highest approval since February
As Rasmussen reported in its monthly average, the president’s approval stands at 48% — just one point shy of February, which marked his high mark of the year.
Furthermore, his August numbers represent a clear improvement over the previous two months. His latest approval rating is one point higher than July and three points higher than June.
The Examiner noted that Trump’s numbers took a hit over the summer as he faced criticism over his response to nationwide protests.
While the president is still dealing with negative press coverage on multiple fronts, President Barack Obama’s approval rating was nearly identical to Trump’s at the same point in his 2012 re-election bid.
Obama, of course, went on to soundly defeat Republican nominee Mitt Romney in November.
“Caught up in the day-to-day fluctuations”
Showing evidence of additional improvement this month, Trump’s daily average is also up. It reached 52% on Friday, which is also his best showing since February.
“When tracking President Trump’s job approval on a daily basis, people sometimes get so caught up in the day-to-day fluctuations that they miss the bigger picture,” the Rasmussen report explained. “To look at the longer-term trends, Rasmussen Reports compiles the numbers on a full-month basis, and the results for Trump’s presidency can be seen in the graphics below.”
Much of his improvement over the past two months, the pollsters found, was due to relaxed coronavirus restrictions in many areas and a rebounding economy. As Politico reported this week, a Democratic Party official in Arizona expressed growing frustrations about Trump’s perceived chances on Election Day.
“There is that little sort of unsettled feeling in people because we can tell that [Trump’s messaging] is grabbing hold, and it’s working,” Holly Lyon said.
In 2016, Democrats became enamored with polls showing a surefire victory for then-nominee Hillary Clinton. With less than two months until votes are cast, it appears some in the party are beginning to think they might be repeating the same mistakes.