A new ABC News/Washington Post poll finds Trump's approval rating inching back up to 40% from 36% in January, but the real news is Trump's base is coming back to him.
Overall, Trump has gained ground in approval among several demographic groups that were important in his 2016 campaign. For one, 59 percent of Americans living in rural areas now approve of his job performance, up 17 points from January and a smaller seven points from last November. Among white rural Americans specifically, his approval is even higher: 65 percent approve, up from 50 percent in January.
Trump garners above-water approval among whites, 53 percent of whom approve of the president, up seven points from January. He does even better among whites without college degrees (60 percent, up seven points) and white men without college degrees (70 percent, up six points). Almost three-quarters of conservatives approve of the president in the latest poll, 74 percent, up nine points from January.
Trump continues to face overwhelming disapproval from an array of other groups, including 79 percent of racial and ethnic minorities, 67 percent of adults under age 30, and 64 percent of women. Nearly 9 in 10 Democrats and over 8 in 10 liberals also disapprove of Trump.
If you're wondering why the last six weeks has been nothing but Trump attacks on his enemies' list, it's because Trump is circling his wagons and rallying the base, and these numbers are out before the latest strikes in Syria. When it comes to rural white voters, and especially white men without college degrees, Trump is now fully their man. Portraying attacks on Trump as attacks on them is a deliberate strategy.
It's working. I expect this number to only grow as we head into midterms.
I don't know if it will be enough to save other Republicans in November, especially since Trump's attacks are landing on congressional Republicans and there's a lot of collateral damage on the GOP in general. But if Trump gets those white voters to turn out, the blue wave will crash on the rocks and do no damage.
This tells me Trump is re-motivating the base, even with taking his trade war with China into effect on rural voters. They believe he's going to win and make the jobs come back. They're willing to suffer for him for a variety of reasons.
This also tells me that red state voter suppression of black and Hispanic voters will be even more important in 2018 and 2020.
The most important poll in 2018 though happens on Election Day. Get out there.