- Drew Angerer/Getty Images
After six months in the White House, President Donald Trump is on course to be the least popular president at this point in his administration since the advent of modern polling.
But negative perception of the president hasn’t improved his former opponent’s standing in the eyes of the public.
A Bloomberg Politics poll released Tuesday showed Hillary Clinton with a 39% approval rating, 2 points lower than Trump’s approval rating in the same poll. It was Clinton’s second-lowest approval rating since Bloomberg started tracking her in 2009. The poll was conducted July 8-12 among 1,001 adults and had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.
It is normal for former candidates to experience rehabilitation in the polls following a presidential campaign – Clinton experienced the phenomenon during her tenure as secretary of state, and her 2016 primary opponent Sen. Bernie Sanders remains one of the most popular politicians in America.
But the Trump White House and conservative media outlets have remained in campaign mode against the former secretary of state, who has criticized Trump for misleading Americans with “alternative facts” and knocked policies like Trump’s budget and his healthcare plan.
Trump has repeatedly blasted Clinton since the election, making vague, unproven claims that her campaign violated laws.
Why aren't the same standards placed on the Democrats. Look what Hillary Clinton may have gotten away with. Disgraceful!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 12, 2017
Crooked Hillary Clinton now blames everybody but herself, refuses to say she was a terrible candidate. Hits Facebook & even Dems & DNC.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 1, 2017
With all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special counsel appointed!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 18, 2017
But in follow-up interviews, Clinton voters who participated in the Bloomberg poll said their negative feelings about her didn’t have anything to do with her losing the election.
Bloomberg noted that voter comments “often reflected the ongoing angst among Democrats about how best to position themselves against Trump and Republicans in 2018 and beyond.” Some voters commented that they liked Sanders better than Clinton and wished he were the Democratic nominee.
Chris Leininger, a 29-year-old insurance agent from California, told Bloomberg that Clinton was “hard to like” and noted that she thought Sanders had a better story to tell voters.
“But I don’t blame her for Trump,” Leininger said. “There were a lot of factors that fed into Trump becoming a president and she was just one of them.”
And a significant portion of Clinton’s own voters said they didn’t like her. More than 20% of Clinton voters Bloomberg polled said they had an unfavorable view of her.